Owning a dog is a major responsibility. Similar to caring for a child or another beloved family member, your pet deserves adequate care and protection to ensure a healthy, enjoyable life. Although most dog owners know to feed and toilet their pups each day, there are other things you can do to keep your dog happy, safe, and healthy.
Set Up a Daily Schedule
Like people, a pet enjoys a better quality of life when daily activities are consistent and organized on a regular schedule. Water should always be available except possibly a couple of hours before bedtime. This will keep a dog hydrated, especially during the warmer months. Dogs also love and benefit from daily exercise, such as walks on a leash or playtime in the yard. Spending time with the owner helps a pup to feel secure and establish loyalty. Bedtime is likewise important to help the dog know that it is time to settle down for the night. Most dogs can be trained for toileting right before bedtime and first thing in the morning. This will help to prevent nighttime accidents and your pet’s discomfort.
Feed Your Dog Healthy Food
Food should be offered according to your veterinarian’s recommendations, such as two or three times daily. Give your dog the food best suited for canine nutrition and digestion. Although some owners like to feed their pet table scraps, this is always the healthiest option for dogs. Some foods can cause them to gain an unhealthy amount of weight. Other foods can upset their stomachs and cause vomiting or diarrhea. It is also important to give your dog the right amount of food. Too much could lead to unwanted weight gain while too little could cause your pet to feel hungry and try to snatch food from other pets or kids. Dog treats that are appropriate for your pet are a nice reward for good behavior or when teaching them obedience or tricks.
Some pet owners use pee pads to let their dogs toilet indoors. Placing the pads in the same spot trains the dog where to toilet on a regular basis. Other owners, however, prefer to take their dog outside for toileting. This must be done on a regular basis to avoid accidents from a pet who cannot hold it for very long periods of time. Some pets can wait longer between toileting sessions than others. Get familiar with your dog’s needs to provide toileting comfort and consistency. Keep in mind that a puppy being trained or a dog that is sick may have more frequent toileting needs.
Every dog should be vaccinated unless it will stay indoors day and night without exposure to other animals. Even then, vets often recommend certain vaccinations to guard your pet’s health. Schedule annual checkup with a veterinarian to ensure your dog stays healthy and in good condition. Vaccinations are usually offered on a regular schedule, whether annually, such as a rabies booster, or in a series of two or three. Flea treatments can also be given by the vet, or a flea control product will be suggested. Keep up with the vaccinations to keep your pet protected at all times. Missing even one booster could expose your pet to the risk of that disease.
Get an ID Collar
Identification tags should be worn by your dog at all times, especially when outdoors. The ID tag may indicate the date of the last rabies booster shot in case the pet would bite another animal or a person. The tag can also include the dog’s name, the owner’s name, and contact information in case the pet gets lost or separated from the owner. Some owners prefer to use a pet tattoo that is imprinted on the dog’s skin rather than using a physical collar tag. This is a permanent ID mark that can sometimes be activated electronically to enable a pet to be located through a GPS-type connection. Having the pet identifiable can enable you to locate your dog quickly if it should happen to get away from you in public.
Install Property Fencing
Dogs that go outside should be protected by having a fence around the property’s perimeter. Any kind of fencing is helpful. But the best way to keep your dog on your property instead of wandering the neighborhood or possibly getting hit by a passing vehicle is to install a smart dog fence, sometimes called an invisible fence. This type of fencing is electronically designed to link with your dog’s collar sensor. As the pet gets close to the fence, for example, to sniff for birds or rodents, the collar sensor will start to vibrate and emit a low-frequency buzz that the dog can feel. The closer the pet gets to the fence, the stronger the vibration. When the pet gets too close, a slight shock will be felt to repel the animal from the smart fence. This system works very well in training dogs to stay in their own yards.
A dog that is well cared for generally behaves well and adjusts quickly to a daily routine. Help your pet to feel secure by providing quality care and protection.