It doesn’t matter if you have had your furry friend for 10 minutes or 10 years, their health is paramount. A healthy dog is a happy dog, and this is your biggest responsibility as a dog owner. Quite frankly, if this aspect isn’t top of your agenda, you don’t deserve to own one in the first place.
Having your priorities in order is just the start, though. Taking care of a dog in a loving and effective manner requires many elements. Most owners will do the basics, but many will be missing out on the little gestures that make all the difference.
But going the extra mile for your pup will have a massive impact. Here are 11 items that should be on your checklist.
Protecting Their Feet On Walks
Regular exercise obviously plays a key role in a dog’s overall health and happiness. An inactive pup can become fat, depressed and suffer from worse conditioning. Different breeds have different needs, but twice daily isn’t an uncommon requirement.
Walks will work wonders for the physical and mental well-being of your pooch. However, you need to be sure that they’ve been protected. Many owners don't consider the dog’s paws, but they should. On hot days, you should check how hot the tarmac is. If it’s too hot for your hands, it’s too hot for their feet. Invest in dog booties or switch to grassy surfaces.
Fail to do this, and your dog could be left with very painful paws indeed.
Keeping Fur At The Right Length
Most owners will keep a dog’s fur clean. Aside from making life better for the pup, it will also go a long way to reducing bad odors and other negative influences. But cleanliness isn’t the only item to look out for.
It’s equally important that the dog’s hair is kept at a suitable length. Shorter hair doesn’t only help the dog stay cooler in hot months. But it can also prevent poor health caused by irritation. This can be especially true when dealing with Shih Tzus and other small breeds that might suffer from ear infections.
You should always want to take pride in your dog’s appearance anyway.
Protecting Their Joints
Nutrition is naturally a fundamental part of the dog’s overall health. As well as feeding the pooch in a manner that keeps them at a suitable weight, you’ll probably be keen to keep teeth in good health too. But if you think these are the only items to consider, you’re sorely mistaken.
Choosing the right foods and treats is important, both in terms of quality and quantity. However, supplementing their diets with the right additions is equally vital. Visit www.AllVetSupply.com for more information on the various products available. It could make all the difference to preventing long-term deterioration of joints, muscles, and bones.
The last thing you want is to see the dog in pain during later life. Take this precautions now, and your furry friend should be just fine.
Maintaining An Active Mind
When it comes to nutrition, food isn’t just a key factor for maintaining physical health. It can also be the secret weapon for maintaining the dog’s mental health too. As a loving owner, you must take full advantage of this opportunity.
There are various games that can be played to actively encourage your dog to work for food. This can have a telling impact on the development of their brains, especially in the early years. Moreover, if you’re a new owner, it’s a great way to promote a stronger connection with the pup too.
What more incentive could you ever need?
Protect Them During Activities
Dogs love being physically active, and you should promote it at every opportunity. As well as walks and games of fetch, they may also want to jump in the pool or sea for a swim. Quite frankly, if your dog is a water lover, it will be almost impossible to keep them out. The best thing you can do is protect them.
Like humans, the water can irritate ears and eyes. Doggles are a great way to protect the latter, and should be considered a must-have accessory for any dog that frequents the water. Meanwhile, there are various ear droplets available to help with that particular issue too.
Fail to do this, and they’ll soon stop completing those activities altogether.
Promoting Positive Pet Relationships
In many households, the dog is just one of several family pets. You might have various dogs. Or you may have cats or other pets. In either case, you need to ensure that every member of the family feels comfortable. And yes, the pets are members of the family.
The relationship between dog and cat is arguably the hardest to control. However, laying those positive foundations will soon generate the right response. Pets aren’t stupid. As long as you teach them from an early stage, they’ll soon understand the message. Learn more at www.petsit.com.
It’s not simply a case of preventing fights between your animals. It’s about ensuring that they all feel happy in their environment. Without those feelings, you’re failing them badly.
Building A Family Environment
Interactions with other pets are just the start, though. You also need to be sure that the dog feels comfortable around every member of the household. Even if a family member isn’t particularly fond of pets.
Perhaps the hardest challenge is teaching young children to treat the dog with care. Kids have the natural love and affection for pooches. Sadly, that can often result in them being too heavy handed. At the other end of the scale, some kids can be scared of pets. Dealing with those issues effectively is vital.
Dogs are smart and can pick up on those uneasy atmospheres. In turn, this can have a damning impact on their health. Likewise, it can impact the family member too.
Mixing The Adventures
The importance of dog walks and regular exercise have already been mentioned, but they cannot be emphasized enough. They really are the most crucial part of ensuring the pooch remains active and physically fit. However, they can also have a telling impact on the dog’s emotional health too.
To gain the very best results, you need to be sure that those adventures are being mixed up effectively. On one hand, dogs can grow attached to their favorite routes, especially as they’ll have planted their scent down. On the other hand, new adventures give them an unprecedented chance to explore new areas.
Apart from anything else, mixing it up can add a little extra enjoyment for you too. Meanwhile, you can also add new energy to the walks by doing some as a family and some individually. If nothing else, it’ll make getting those regular walks in a lot easier to complete.
Keeping The Dog Warm In Winter
Throughout the winter months, keeping your dog warm should be a priority. If you’ve maintained a healthy diet, then your pet won’t have excess layers of fat to stay warm. Therefore, you need to go the extra mile.
The cold months aren’t an excuse to stop taking regular walks. However, you may need to invest in a dog jumper to keep them happy and snug on those adventures. Meanwhile, you should ensure that dog beds are warm at night time. You can find the best solutions at www.wayfair.com.
If the dog is kept outside for any extended period, day or night, you should provide a sheltered area too. Cold, wet weather might not just make your furry friend ill. But it could also make you ill too.
Avoid New Additions
No, I don’t mean neutering your pet, although that is another thing to consider. Bringing a dog into your life is a big decision, and the pooch quickly becomes a part of the furniture. But let’s leave it at one addition, shall we?
Insects and parasites can bring awful damage to your pet's health, internally and externally. Tapeworms and similar issues can take a long time to spot and treat. As with human health, prevention is the best form of protection. You owe it to your dog to embrace the latest products for prevention.
Medicines and nutritional goods can help reduce internal threats. Meanwhile, regular combing of hair and frequent teeth cleaning are essential. You won’t only be protecting the dog. You’ll protect your entire family too.
Tracking Your Pet
There’s no doubt that the majority of pet owners give their dog the level of love and attention that they need. And these elements are the perfect foundation for keeping the dog healthy and happy. But that’s not the only crucial aspect to remember. They also need to be safe.
Technology has progressed at a rapid rate in recent years. Traditional dog collars remain an important accessory. However, there’s no question that tracking devices are the best option. The chances of your dog being stolen are slim, but having your bases covered will put your mind at ease.
The more likely scenario is that the dog will become lost. If this happens, checking the chip will help you find and rescue your furry friend immediately. The alternative just isn’t worth thinking about.