Having an animal can be an amazing experience, and many of us have high hopes for our new pet to bound straight into our arms and offer us unconditional love from the get-go. However, it is not always that simple. Sometimes it can sometimes be difficult to form either an initial bond or continue building a strong bond, and this can depend on a few factors. One being what type of species you have gone for, and another being the character of your pet, just to name two.
This piece will take a look at how you can build a stronger bond with your pet and make them more comfortable in your presence.
No matter where your pet has come from or what background they have had, it is important that you are patient with them, and do not force them to do anything they do not want to do, or be anything they do not want to be. All pets have different personalities, regardless of any stereotypes, so the first important stage of creating a bond with your pet is to accept them for who they are and let them come to you in their own time.
Always respect their boundaries, and make sure you do not push them, otherwise you might find they will start showing aggressive behavior.
Use Your Scent
Many animals rely on their sense of smell very heavily, and you want them to smell your scent and think of you as home. When you first get a puppy or kitten, give them a jumper or towel that you have worn or slept with so they can get used to your scent while they are comfortable, such as being in their bed or sleeping.
If you have a smaller pet, such as a hamster, let them get use to your smell before trying to handle them, as they are prey animals. To help this process along, sleep with tissues or put them in your top, anywhere next to your skin, and then put those tissues in the cage.
Another top tip for scent help is to roll your hand around in their bedding before handling them, because this means your hands will smell like their safe place.
Even if your new (to you) pet is nervous around you, it is important to still take them to the vet to get their jabs and keep their overall health in check.
Check out ortinganimalhospital.com to find a reputable clinic.
Create Play Time
One of the easiest ways to bond with your pet is through play time! This can work well for many species from as a hamster right up to a dog. If your pet is at risk of becoming an escape artist, then you might want to set up a safe area where they can explore freely without making a run for it! This goes for items you do not want chewed up. Make sure you clear the area completely, and then fill with engaging toys and treats. You might want to give them time to explore the area and what you have laid out for them before you start trying to pet or play with them straight away. This will make sure they are comfortable and settled with their surroundings before you start trying to interact with them.
Begin Hand Feeding
When your pets start associating you with food, it can only be a good thing – especially if you have a food motivated pet!
It can be nerve wracking to handle a pet for the first time if you are unsure about their temperament or how well it will be received, so it is important that you go slowly.
Offering treats from your hand is good place to start when hand feeding, especially if they can only get this magical tasting food from your hand and nowhere else. You might try handing it to them from the tip of your fingers first, and eventually lead up to the palm. Then you could move on to their everyday food.
Do not force them to eat if they do not want to, and let them come to you in their own time. Eventually they will be eating out of your hand – literally!
Give Them Space
Much like humans, our pets need space from time to time, and smothering them can cause them to either act out or become reserved. Cats are a good example of this! You might have a very snuggly cat, but some might only tolerate some pets before wanting to go outside and explore what the world has to offer. Do not make them feel trapped and let them come to you. When they know they will be left alone when they need it, they are more likely to stick around!