Anyone with a dog knows they’re a member of the family. Keeping your dog healthy and happy is high on your list of priorities. A happy and healthy dog has better behavior and will be a joy to be around. And, your dog will thank you for your care by showing lots of love and companionship for many years to come!
Proper food, water, hygiene and regular vet appointments all come together in keeping your dog healthy. Add in some training, promoted by lots of great treats, and you will have a well behaved dog that responds to your commands. Let’s look at the ways you can make your dog healthy and happy at the same time!
Regular Vet Visits Are Important in Keeping Your Dog Healthy
To maintain your dog’s health, you need to visit your veterinarian for regular checkups. Just like people, dogs need shots and examinations to ensure they don’t get sick or develop diseases. You will be able to get regular vaccinations for distemper and rabies to ensure you dog doesn’t have problems in the future. A vet will also check the overall health of your dog and make sure they aren’t developing any signs of anything serious.
Set up a regular schedule with your vet for your dog and be sure to take your dog to the vet if you notice anything abnormal that should be checked out. You want to give you dog a healthy and happy life and a vet can help make this happen.
Feed Your Dog A Healthy Diet
This may seem obvious, but it can really affect how your dog feels on a daily basis. You should feed your dog a high-quality food that is full of nutrients that will give them energy throughout the day. Dog food, either a good quality commercial brand or home made, should be the bulk of your dog’s diet. Treats and people food, while not necessarily bad for your dog, should be a small part of her overall diet.
Speaking of people food, make sure you avoid foods that can be harmful to your dog such as chocolate, grapes, raisins, caffeine and alcohol.
When choosing a pet food for your dog, check out the ingredients list. Look for meat as the main ingredient, including beef, chicken, or turkey. Avoid meat byproducts, as they’re mostly comprised of filler and offer very little nutritional value.
Vegetables should also be one of the first ingredients on the label, as they are a good source nutrition for you dog. Again, stay away from filler ingredients such as corn syrup, corn and animal byproducts. These are not healthy foods for your dog to eat, and staying away will improve your dog’s coat as well as their teeth health.
Feeding your dog also includes giving them fresh water daily. Make sure their bowl is clean so algae and bacteria don’t grow in it. Your dog needs to stay hydrated and relies on you to give them fresh, clean water. Do this daily to make your dog happy.
Give Your Dog Plenty Of Exercise
Exercise is important to your dog’s health and will help promote good behavior. Dogs need exercise just like people and should be taken for walks daily or left to run around. This can help maintain your dog’s weight and is a good opportunity to play with your dog. Plan to spend 30 minutes a day getting them exercise. A walk around the block will work or a friendly game of fetch will get their heart rate up and get them moving.
Groom On A Regular Basis
Grooming your dog can go a long way in improving their appearance and health. You will need to wash your dog and brush her regularly to keep her coat shiny, while removing any dead hair. A good brush through will remove any shedding hair and keep their coat in good health. Depending on your dog, you many need to get them haircuts to keep their hair at a manageable level. A regular washing and cut will make it easier for you to look after their appearance and a groomer can always help with this.
You will also need to clip their nails as they get long. Long nails can snag on furniture and carpet, causing pain for your dog. Keep their nails short, but not too short that you cut the blood vessel or nerve in the nail. A professional groomer can help you with the right technique.
Also be sure to check your dog’s ears and teeth. When checking the ears look for anything that looks unusual such as: discharge, parasites or smells. Keep them clean, and visit your vet if something doesn’t look right. A good tooth brushing can remove plaque and promote good mouth health for your dog.
Reward With Treats
You may want to reward your dog with treats on occasion. This is a good idea to help with training and a nice way to reward your dog for good behavior. Keep it to a minimum, as treats do add extra calories to your dog’s diet. Homemade treats are a good option, as they will be lower in calories and you will know what went into making them!
You don’t want to overfeed your dog treats, as this can affect their weight and cause them to develop obesity. An overweight dog is at a higher risk for health concerns like cancer, diabetes, heart disease and osteoarthritis. Plus, this can reduce your dog’s life by as much as two years. You want to keep your dog as healthy as possible so they live a long time!
Socialize Your Dog
Your dog’s mental wellbeing is so important! Get them out with other dogs and people so they don’t become afraid or aggressive to others. A chance to socialize for your dog will allow them to have a little fun. It’s a good idea to take them to dog parks where they can run and play with other dogs. This will also get them used to riding in a car and looking forward to these trips.
Start integrating your dog as early as possible so they feel comfortable around other people and animals. This will be a lot easier on you when people come to your house and will make sure your dog doesn’t cower out of fear or become hostile to others.
Proper care will go a long way in keeping your dog healthy and happy for a long time to come. Remember your dog relies on you and as your best friend, it should be imperative that you do everything you can to keep them in good shape. These simple steps can work to ensure you get the most out of your dog’s companionship from good behavior to love.