What You Need To Know If A New Pet Is On Your Christmas List


Imagine Christmas morning as the children shriek with delight when they discover a new pet under the twinkling Christmas tree. It seems like a scene from a Norman Rockwell painting, but unfortunately the reality is often not as idyllic. There’s a reason shelters often see a surge of surrendered pets after the holidays as people realize a new cat or dog was more than they bargained for.

If you’re thinking of adding a new pet to your family this holiday season, do so after considering the costs, both financial and time-wise. Some pet owners find themselves in a bind after realizing that the financial strains of the gift giving season leave them unable to afford the necessary vaccinations a new pet requires. Or, new owners of puppies and kittens may not have taken into account the necessity and cost of spaying or neutering their new pets.

And then there’s the time element that new pets require. Training, walking, feeding, and playing all take time, and some families fail to designate just who is going to do what, and when. Too often the tasks fall on one family member after all the excitement and willingness to pitch in falls away for the rest of the family.

However, if you’ve taken these scenarios into consideration and have determined that the holiday is indeed the right time to introduce a new pet into your family, you can make the transition easier by preparing for a few factors ahead of time:

  • Have your vet lined up before getting your new pet. Ask him or her what you should be looking for as far as the pet’s overall health goes, and what you might expect to pay for vaccinations, wellness exams, or any chronic conditions that may develop. If you’re getting a puppy or kitten, find out which vaccinations he or she will need, and when you’ll need to schedule them.

  • Determine what supplies your new pet will require, such as food, bedding, a crate or carrier, toys, etc. Hiding the supplies may be a challenge if you’re trying to keep the pet’s arrival a surprise, but you’ll want to have anything you’ll initially need on hand.

  • Secure or block off the Christmas tree so pets can’t jump on the lower branches or drink from the water in the tree’s stand. Christmas tree water may contain bacteria or fertilizers that could cause vomiting or diarrhea. Keep the water covered if you can’t easily block access to the tree.

  • Make sure the electrical cords for all lights are hidden. If chewed, they can cause a shock or electrical burn. If you can’t hide or block the cords, spray them with bitter apple to dissuade licking and chewing.

  • Keep all decorations out of reach. They may look chew toys and could cause choking.

Planning ahead for your new pet’s first Christmas is one of the first proactive steps you’ll be taking in preventative care for your furry friend, which is what we’re all about at PetWellClinic® of Knoxville and Alcoa.

We offer low-cost puppy and kitten packages and can help you figure out which vaccinations your new pet needs, and when. We’ll be happy to help you determine the best vaccination and prevention care plan to keep your pet happy and healthy well beyond the holiday season.

By operating convenient hours for non-surgical care, PetWellClinic® is able to offer substantially discounted prices for vaccinations, safe flea and tick preventative products, wellness exams, and treatment of minor conditions—with quick in-and-out service during convenient evening and weekend hours and no appointment necessary.

PetWellClinic® has three locations: 10549 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN 37922; 7329 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN 37919; and 228 S. Calderwood Street, Alcoa, TN 37701. Learn more about how PetWellClinic® can exceed your expectations for affordable, top quality pet care by visiting our website at www.petwellclinic.com.


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