Raising a dog is a big undertaking and long term commitment. The responsibilities that come along with owning a pet are numerous, however so are the rewards. This article aims to provide you with a few useful tips to help you with the different aspects of owning and caring for a dog.
Look into subsidized health care for your dog if money is tight. Many local communities, in cooperation with groups like the SPCA offer discounted services that have proven invaluable to dog owners. Look into getting your dog spayed or neutered and vaccinated for a fraction of veterinary costs at a sponsored event probably close-by to you. Just contact the SPCA or an animal shelter in your town.
Refrain from making the training sessions with your dogs too long. Extended sessions can make a dog tire out and become bored easily when you are trying to teach them new things. Limit your training sessions to 20-30 minutes, as this will help to keep the full attention of your dog.
It is important for you to take your dog in to see the vet on a fairly regular basis. Just like humans, dogs can develop health problems like toothaches, arthritis and weight gain. Do not wait until you think your dog is sick before taking him in to be seen.
Your dog has teeth just like you, so it makes sense that he needs proper dental care. Invest in a dog toothbrush and brush his teeth often. Simply allowing the vet to do it at his regular checkups is not enough. You can also purchase treats that are specifically meant to help with your pet's teeth.
If there are prescription medications in your home, be sure to keep it out of your dog's reach. Just a few of your pills could literally kill your dog. Call your vet as soon as possible if your dog swallows any pills.
Dogs love to eat grass and other plants. When you're outside, this may not be much of a problem, but if you maintain houseplants indoors, chances are they are poisonous to dogs. Before bringing a dog into the home, make sure all your houseplants are well out of reach of a dog who may be tempted by a green tasty treat.
If training has become routine and boring with your dog, consider introducing agility exercises into the mix. These will still teach your dog to obey and be challenging, but they tend to be a lot more fun than the regular commands. Get the whole family involved by making an obstacle course and working the dog through it frequently.
Let your dog know who is boss! Unless shown otherwise, a dog will naturally assume that he is the leader of the pack - once this has been established it is quite difficult to persuade him otherwise! When disciplining your dog, be firm in tone, but calm. Never punish a dog in a physical manner, as this will lead to lifelong mistrust. Also, when he behaves, remember to praise him!
Your dog needs to exercise regularly. Like humans, dogs must exercise to burn calories, remain healthy, and help their minds stay sharp. Exercising also helps them avoid boredom that can cause destructive behaviors. Keeping your dog active can curb chewing, biting, digging, and chasing urges. It can even help them avoid depression.
Make sure that you trim your dog's nails on a fairly regular basis. You do not want them to get too long since it will make it uncomfortable for them to walk and they may develop health issues. They should be at a length that just about touches the ground.
Try to provide your dog with plenty of opportunities to socialize. Take him on walks to the park or beach where he will be around people and other dogs. Encourage his interactions with others and praise him for good manners. He'll be much more comfortable in any setting and generally happier too.
If you have a smaller breed dog, make sure everyone who touches him knows the proper way to hold him. Read Webpage can be easily injured by inappropriate handling and many owners find this out the hard way. Gently lift at the belly from under his front legs and secure him with both hands.
Make sure that your dog always has fresh water. Water that sits for too long can end up developing bacteria, and this can make your dog sick. Make sure that you change the water daily. You can also invest in a drinking fountain for your dog, which will provide a steady stream of clean water all the time.
Consider getting your dog from a shelter. Many of the dogs that are brought there are well behaved, yet the owners could not handle the responsibility that came with raising them. For the best results, visit the shelter a few times so that you can find the dog that is right for you and your lifestyle.
Remember, your body language tells your dog a lot about what you want and expect. In fact, body language is often a more effective training tool than simply using your words. Therefore, if you are training your pet, have someone else observe your training sessions and give you feedback on what kind of body language you are using.
Keep your dog hydrated. Similar to humans, dogs need plenty of fresh water to drink. If a dog doesn't get enough water, they can easily get dehydrated, sick, and possibly die. Provide them with a fresh water bowl every day. Always keep it filled and clean for them. Keep the bowl in single location.
If your dogs breath smells extremely bad, it is important to set up a vet visit to make sure this is not coming from some type of mouth problem. Such problems could be tooth decay or an infection. If untreated, more problems could arise causing further expenses down the road.
There are few greater joys in life than the love you can share with your loyal companion. It won't always be a walk in the park but the rewards are more than worth it. Enjoy your pup and continue to learn more to help keep your lives happy and healthy.