What It Takes To Give Your Dog A Good, Healthy Life – A Collaboration
What makes a good pet owner? Offering your dog everything they need to have a happy, healthy, and life, of course. But how exactly do you do that? Whether you’re a novice with a new pup, or you simply want to make sure that you’re not missing anything, here are a few tips to make sure you’re doing what you can to keep your pup secure and happy.
Ensure you have everything they need
Make sure you’re equipped with everything needed to offer them a healthy and safe life, first of all. Before you welcome your dog home, you should make sure that they have somewhere safe, clean, and soft to sleep, preferably a dog bed of some sorts.
They are also going to need a bowl that is constantly full of fresh, clean and cool water, as dogs usually need to drink around a half to a full ounce of water for every pound of body weight they have a day.
Also consider other essential equipment like a car harness, travelling crate, and any clothing they might need.
Furthermore, don’t forget to get them an identity disk and collar so that if they end up leaving the roost you can get them back without too much trouble.
Pet-proof where needed
Making sure that the home is safe for your animal companion is just as important, as well. Just as you would baby proof a home to make sure that a young child wasn’t able to get their hands on anything particularly hazardous, you should do the same for any canine friend.
This could include making sure that any medications or dangerous products are kept inside cupboards from now on, as well as using puppy guards to stop them from going upstairs or going near the fireplace.
You should also make sure that you have a pet-friendly garden. This includes securing the boundaries so that they can’t dig out, taking out any plants that could be poisonous to them, and securing vegetable patches with gates.
Know how much exercise they need
Besides food, water, and plenty of room to roam free, every dog is going to need your help with actively exercising.
Without the right exercise, they can begin to suffer a range of health problems just like humans, including weakened muscles and weight gain. Furthermore, dogs that don’t get a chance to work off that extra energy will often show it in different ways.
For instance, many will show up as tearing up the house, too, chewing and pulling on whatever they can.
The majority of dogs have exercise needs of around 30 minutes to an hour each day, but this will change depending on the breed. There are lots of breed guides on the net you can look too for more details.
Get to know your vet
Once you’re done with the prep work, it’s time to welcome your new friend home. Then it’s time to immediately go and find yourself a good vet.
Your veterinarian is going to help you organise and schedule all of the preliminary health checks and procedures they need, including vaccinations that can protect them from early illness and the pest prevention that stops things like fleas and ticks getting in the way.
Emergency vets can also be a great source of help should your dog get injured or get into something that they should have been kept away from. It’s always wise to keep their number in your phone or stuck to your fridge so that they are there when you really need them.
Ensure you give them a high-quality diet
Whether your dog is full grown or they’re in that critical development stage, their diet will always be essential to their health. For adult dogs, finding high-quality proteins sourced directly from animals, especially those with high vitamin and mineral counts, and foods that are low in fillers in like too much grain is essential, but they do need some fiber.
With puppies, it’s more important to find them food that is formulated especially for puppies to meet their nutritional requirements.
Knowing when to switch them over is important, too. Small and medium sized dogs should be switching to adult foods from around 9 months to a year, but larger dogs shouldn’t make that switch until they are around two years old.
Care for their dental health, too
Just like we humans, dogs are susceptible to oral health risks, including tooth decay and tooth pain, gum disease, and infection. However, their oral care is routinely ignored by owners who think it’s not a concern. Often, it only becomes a notable problem when they’re older, at which point a lot of the damage may already be done.
Learning good oral hygiene such as how to brush their teeth when they are younger can help you keep up with those same habits later in life.
There are also plenty of dog treats designed to help clean their teeth. Otherwise, it’s worth taking a look inside their mouth to check that their gums and tongue are a healthy colour regularly and, if not, to get them to the vet sooner rather than later.
Don’t let them out without supervision
You might feel inclined to let your dog off the leash every now and then and, if you’re in a safe familiar space where you have been several times, it’s not always the end of the world. However, getting into the habit of letting the dog be in complete control when they are outside the house can lead to some dangerous consequences.
You don’t know when they might encounter an aggressive animal that may injure them, or what they could go rooting into, whether it’s someone’s garbage bags or some flowers and food that are hazardous to their health. As a result, you should never let your dog out of the house without your direct supervision.
Grooming’s good for them, too
It’s essential that you establish a full grooming routine with your dog, learning how often to bathe them and getting recommendations on shampoos from the vet.
Brushing the dog will get rid of unwanted hair, but can also make it easier to check and maintain their skin and coat. If you don’t groom them, it could be easy to miss skin problems as well as the presence of pests such as ticks and fleas. Especially, if you have a bulldog, you will need to pay close attention to their skin because skin infections and irritation are common bulldog health issues.
Another part of grooming is taking care of their toenails, too. Toenails that are too long can be more prone to both breakages and infections after all.
Again, if you have any questions about how often you should take care of any grooming need, just ask your vet the next opportunity you get.
Mind their behaviour
If you want to keep your dog safe, you should also mind how they act when they’re outside the home.
Accidents and incidents with other dogs and people can turn potentially dangerous if your dog scares them or they believe they are a threat.
Socialisation classes can be highly beneficial for helping your dog greet new faces without any of that risk. Furthermore, teaching them obedience from an early age with commands such as sit, stay, down, and come will help you keep your dog under control later, when a situation is potentially hazardous.
If you can’t fulfill all of the responsibilities mentioned above, then you should seriously think about whether you’re in the right position to be welcoming a dog home right now. Otherwise, follow those tips and always keep your vet involved and things should go fine.
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