While bringing a canine into the fold is a rewarding experience, first-time dog owners commonly find themselves in over their heads with their newfound responsibilities. It’s important to be prepared for these obligations prior to making the choice to get a dog. This is especially the case when it comes to the health and wellbeing of your canine companion.
With this in mind, let’s go over some dog health essentials:
Dogs are pack animals and have an innate desire to be part of a group. If you’re away at work for most of the day – which is the case for most dog owners – your dog is likely suffering from some level of anxiety. It’s important to spend as much time as possible with your dog, providing your pet with plenty of love and attention. Furthermore, dog anxiety treatment options include all natural remedies useful for alleviating the stress of being separated from their human for long periods of time. These come in handy for dog owners who have no choice but to leave their canine unattended for hours at a time.
Dogs are similar to humans in that their behavior is best shaped during their youth. Puppyhood is a critical phase in a dog’s life as much as childhood is for a person. With this in mind, it’s imperative for dog owners to avoid squandering those precious three to nine months. This is the time to successfully housetrain your canine to avoid undesirable behavior once the dog reaches maturity. While the idea that an old dog can’t learn new tricks is false, dog owners who allow their pets to develop bad habits will have a harder time correcting these behaviors than those who nip them in the bud during the puppy phase.
The nutrition provided to a dog is often overlooked by first time owners. It’s not unusual for folks in this situation to grab the cheapest bag of kibble and leave an arbitrarily sized bowl of it on the floor beside a bowl of water, followed by the ritual of throwing dinner scraps down for a delicious treat. While it’s not necessary to become a doggy dietician in order to be a good dog owner, a basic understanding of which foods you should not feed your dog and which are essential for their health is important. This will help to ensure your dog maintains a healthy weight and avoids problems down the line which are commonly associated with poor diet.
Dogs need exercise. Play fetch, go for walks and even go jogging with your dog as often as possible. Just like us, dogs will have stronger hearts, leaner bodies, and a number of other health benefits if they exercise regularly.
Lastly, don’t neglect to get your dog vaccinated. Whether it’s rabies, parvo, or any number of other viral infections affecting the canine population, dogs need their shots to stand a chance in the event they cross paths with dangerous pathogens.
Anyone can go out and buy a dog. In order to be the best dog owner possible, you have to go the extra mile in caring for their health.