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Dog Care, Health And Nutritional Information For Dog Owners

Posted On: August 14, 2019


Dog care, health and nutritional information is essential whether you have a dog or planning to get one. They say all dogs go to heaven, but that can be hard to believe when your pooch is acting out. If you’re having trouble with your dog, you may be frustrated, and you may not know where to turn. When you invite a dog into your home, you are getting more than a pet. This animal will quickly become your best friend and a member of your family. Knowing the best methods of caring for him will help both of you learn to live together in peace. Keep reading to learn some tips about caring for your new friend.

Owning a dog is like adding a child into the family. They need care, attention, love and discipline. You are primarily responsible for your dog care, health and nutritional needs. If you do not prepare yourself for this addition, you may find difficulties in the months ahead. Dogs may be man’s best friend, but that doesn’t mean they’re always easy to live with. From fleas to barking, from bedtime issues to toilet troubles, there are a number of problems that dogs can cause.

You will pay a lot to take care for your dog. High quality dog food, medical care, toys and treats can easily run close to $1,000 in a year. Emergency visits to the vet can cost thousands, so you may want to invest in health insurance for your dog. Take a few moments and read the tips below to learn the best advice for caring for your K-9 companion.

Before you add a dog to your family

If you are thinking about getting a dog, it is crucial that you choose a breed wisely. For instance, if you have children, large vicious dogs may not be a good idea. Or, if you live in an apartment, smaller breeds may be better. Pick a dog that works well with your lifestyle. This forms part of your dog care, health and nutritional responsibilities.

Be careful if you’re searching for a new dog on Craigslist or other classified ads. Many people exaggerate the truth in order to unload problems or challenging training issues and you could end up with an impossible situation on your hands. Only talk to people who are verifiable through vet records and demonstrate positive handling experience.

If you are thinking about adopting a dog, try taking a couple of weeks off work so you can spend some time with your puppy and teach it a few good habits. Training your puppy and helping it get used to its new environment will be much easier if you are home.

When choosing a dog for your home, don’t forget to estimate the size it will be as a full-grown adult. This is especially true if you have small children at home. Although a small puppy will be cute, it may grow into a large, one-hundred-pound dog. Do some research on the average adult size of the breeds you are considering.

Make sure you have the correct dog supplies. Before bringing your dog home for the first time, be sure that you are equipped with the right supplies. Every dog needs a good-sized food and water bowl, a collar and leash, toys, and a comfy place to sleep. Also, remember to purchase an identification tag immediately.

Training tips

You need to train the dog by yourself; more than one person might confuse him. If the other people who help you train your dog are not consistent with what you started teaching, your dog will have a hard time. One person should be the trainer, and everyone else can act to reinforce good behaviors.

Be clear with your pet during training. The word “no” does not explain anything to your dog, other than that you are unhappy with something. Instead, explain which behavior you do want to see. For example, if your dog jumps on the furniture, tell him to get down instead of just saying the word no.

If you live with other people, make sure they are aware of your dog care, health, nutritional information and your training “rules.” It is important that everyone redirects the dog off the furniture, for example, and that they use the same language when doing so. If everyone’s rules are different, your dog is just going to get confused, which will make the training process much longer and more difficult.

Practice training your dog around your home, where you and your pup can be alone. Avoid training your dog in heavily occupied areas. Distractions occur, making it difficult to get your dog to focus on basic commands.

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.

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Helping your dog cultivate the good habits

Remember that dogs are creatures of habit and anything you start with him will be expected in the future. If you’re not keen on him sleeping with you, don’t let him do it only on occasion. Likewise, if you don’t want him begging at the table, never offer him a bite of people food. He will learn and accept things if you are consistent.

If you’re trying to break one of your dog’s unwanted habits, make sure that you understand that it will not happen overnight. Breaking a habit takes time and patience. Don’t get discouraged and give up if it seems like your pup isn’t making progress. Keep at it and maybe try changing your approach to the training. Sometimes this can be the boost that your dog needs.

Never hit your dog. There are better ways to train a dog without having to resort to violence. The best way to train a dog is to reinforce positive behaviors with treats and attention. Negative behavior should be handled with a stern and disapproving voice as opposed to striking the animal.

Properly teach your dog how to walk with a leash. The dog needs to stay beside you, not behind or in front of you. It also needs to know the command “heel”. Having a dog that can properly walk on a leash will be more enjoyable for both you and your pup. Even if your dog is sometimes walked on a loose leash, it should still know the command anyway.

Knowing the medical needs of your dog

Dogs, like humans, can develop health problems, and because of this they should be taken to see their vet at least once each year. This can help to diagnose any health issues early on, reducing both the extremity of the illness and the cost to fix it.

Don’t think that a dog’s health status can be determined by how its nose feels. There are a lot of reasons that dogs will have a wet or cold nose, even when they’re not sick. Your dog’s health can be judged by his demeanor, appetite and energy level. Evaluating them will give you a better picture of your dog’s health. A rectal thermometer can be used on the dog to do a temperature check.

Much like people in the United States, many dogs are overweight. Having a few extra pounds on their frame can lead to a number of health problems, like cancer or diabetes. Many owners simply overfeed their pets. Talk to your veterinarian about how many calories your dog needs each day so you can adjust their meals accordingly.

Your pet needs vaccinations, much in the same way that your baby does. Some common vaccinations that dogs require include rabies, hepatitis and distemper. Each pet is different, and each will have a different immunization schedule. Your veterinarian is a great resource when it comes to which vaccinations are right for the age and breed of your pet.

If your vet gives you medication to take home and administer to your dog, be sure and ask for ideas on getting him to swallow it. Dogs differ in their tolerance of pills and badly flavored liquids, so have a few tricks up your sleeve in case he resists. Getting a dog to take medicine is important, but often challenging.

Protecting your dog

To protect your dog in the event he is lost or stolen, have a microchip surgically implanted by your vet. These handy chips store data that can be retrieved by a shelter or animal officer and used to contact you. They are painless to put in and offer peace of mind for the pet lover!

Before you have your dog fitted with a microchip, be sure and check the database of the company that will store his information. Not all of them are created equal and you want to know that you’ll get a fast response if your dog is lost. Look for a large database that connects to shelters and vets near you.

Make sure that you buy an appropriately sized collar for your dog in order to ensure its health and safety. If the collar is too loose, it may become snagged on something. If the collar is too tight, it may restrict the dog’s breathing ability. Allow for a two-finger space between the dog and the collar.

Be prepared for natural disasters that also impact your dog. Have an emergency supply of water and food for him and know in advance if your local shelter for people will allow pets inside. Too many pets are injured or lost following storms, floods and other situations that cause chaos in a community.

Designate a family member or close friend to be responsible for your dog care, health and nutritional needs, should something happen to you. If you are in an accident and unable to get home, your dog will need someone to feed him and address other needs. Perhaps you trust a neighbor with your house keys, and they could act for you in a time of need.

Do you care about emotional and psychological well-being of your dog?

Try to always be aware of how your dog is feeling. If your dog seems to be nervous, fearful, or scared of certain things, you should take note of this and try to avoid putting your dog in a stressful situation. When a dog is stressed or afraid, you could traumatize your dog if you insist that it stays in the stressful situation.

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Not every dog is capable of going to the dog park. Some dogs will not do well around other dogs that they do not know. Get to know how your dog does around friends’ or neighbors’ dogs before you attempt to take him to the park. This way, you will know if he will be aggressive towards other dogs.

When the dog does something right, be sure to lavish praise on him or her. This is to let the dog know that you want more of that behavior. It will show your dog that doing the right thing will earn him praise from you.

If you’ve got the most well-behaved and lovable dog around, share his good nature with those less fortunate. You could bring him to visit the elderly in nursing homes or sick children in hospitals. Not only will you be improving the quality of life for those people, but your dog will love being a super-star wherever he goes!

Be strong when the time comes to say goodbye to your beloved dog. Many owners keep the animal suffering to keep them in their lives and that’s not fair to the dog. Consult with your vet, then talk it over with family. If it’s time to part ways with your dog, do what’s best for him.

Dogs need exercise too

Just like humans, dogs need to get a good amount of exercise every day. If your dog does not get the exercise it needs, his health will decline, and so will his attitude towards life. Take the time to exercise your dog for at least a half hour each day for the best results.

Before you decide to go get a dog you should think about the individual needs of different breeds of dogs. Some dogs can get enough exercise in the home, while others may need a few hours outside each day. These factors can mean a lot when it comes to meeting the needs of your new family member.

To adequately determine your dog care, health and nutritional needs, establish your dog’s specific exercise regimen. Dogs have different fitness needs based their sex, overall health, age, breed mix, or breed. Every dog should have a couple 10-minute walks a day around the block. Dogs between 6 and 18 months, active breed or mixed breeds, terriers, hounds, and herding dogs will most likely require more fitness than other types of dogs.

Dog care and hygiene

Clean up after your dog when they go to the bathroom in public. Many dog owners let their dog do their business wherever they please whether it’s on a sidewalk, neighbor’s lawn, etc. They can do their business in public, but you must clean it up when they’re done so that it doesn’t cause an unsightly and smelly mess for someone else. So, make sure you carry small bags and gloves with you while you are out walking your dog. If he uses the bathroom outside, it is your responsibility to clean up the mess. It is unsanitary for you to leave it there. In some places, you may receive heavy fines for that.

If your dog is covering everything in the house with his shedding fur, grab a paper towel. Lightly wet it with water and rub it down his back in the direction of fur growth. The loose hair should come off easily on the paper towel and your dog will love the attention too!

Groom your dog regularly. A dog requires constant grooming to keep his coat in tip top condition. Make sure that your dog is completely relaxed before you start the grooming session; this is especially important if he is excitable. Keep the session quite short (5 to 10 minutes at most) until he is comfortable with the idea of being groomed. Most importantly, be sure to praise him and offer a treat after a successful grooming session!

Don’t forget to trim your dog’s nails regularly. Long nails can make him uncomfortable, cause injury to his feet and will ruin your floors. If he makes a “click” sound when he walks on hard wood or linoleum, that’s a good indication it’s time for a trim. Ask your vet to do it if necessary.

Your doghouse and its environment

Consider the placement of your doghouse carefully. Think about the way that the winds typically blow and face the door on the opposite side. If you tend to get winds from all directions, consider a house with a door flap. There are some states that require a door flap, so check with your local animal shelter to learn more.

Not all dogs are meant to be outdoor dogs. If you plan to keep your dog outside, carefully choose the breed. Small dogs, short-hair, or older dogs will not do well being kept outside. Choose one that has a nice thick coat, that is mature and one that is extremely healthy.

Check and double check your fenced in yard for spots your dog could escape through before letting him roam. The most secure method of keeping your dog outside is on a long run with a strong collar, but if you are comfortable that your fence can hold him, he’ll enjoy that even more. Just make sure there’s no room for error!

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.

It is wise to check your area to find out what the local leash laws are. Many areas require a dog to be leashed at all times if it is not on your property. Keeping your dog on a leash is a good idea anyway, as it can be dangerous to let your pet run unattended, where he could be hit by a car, or fight with other dogs.

Be mindful of your own health around your dog

Give your dog hugs, but don’t kiss him. Dogs lick dirty things you don’t even want to think about. Dogs root around in garbage pails, drink enthusiastically from the toilet bowl and love to lick and smell certain body parts of other dogs. Saying that the dog’s mouth is much cleaner than a human’s is folklore. That tidbit of information is plain wrong.

Never allow your dog to be alone with small children, no matter how much you trust his temperament. Many little kids have been attacked by family dogs who have otherwise never demonstrated a tendency towards violence. Sleeping dogs may be woken by a toddler and react negatively or some other offense is committed against the animal that sets him off.

Don’t assume your toy-sized dog’s bite isn’t dangerous, just because he’s little. A lot of owners brush-off training, thinking that the smaller breed dog can get away with a little bad behavior and this isn’t true. As a responsible canine master, you’ve got to make certain your dog does not pose a threat to anyone by having him well trained.

If you have younger children in the home, make sure that you try to teach them what behavior is appropriate with your dog. Let them know the rules and what they are allowed to do. Some dogs are more tolerant of being jumped on, pulled on, and played with than other dogs.

No matter what kind of dog you may have, hang up a few “Beware of Dog” signs on your property. They are known deterrents to would-be burglars and can help protect you and your family. Just the sign alone indicates probable failure of any robbery attempt and a single bark will have them running away!

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What to consider when buying your dog food

When it comes to feeding your dog, make sure that you are using a reputable brand that contains enough nutrition. This is important because there are dog foods that contain an undesirable amount of filler in the food. You want to be sure that your dog is getting the amount of nutrients that he needs to be healthy.

When making a dog food selection, the cheap stuff is rarely the best choice. When you look at the big picture, it is good for your dog to consume nutritious, good quality food. While this could mean that you’re going to have to pay more money, you can know that you’re doing the best for your dog to keep it healthy.

Don’t purchase cheap dog food. Less expensive brands of dog food often contain artificial coloring, additives, preservatives and so on that can be very bad for your dog. Find a list of recommended dog foods from the vet or an advocate for animals. This will be very helpful for your dog care, health and nutritional information.

Diet tips for your dog

Although some dogs do well on the recommended amount of food to be given each day, some dogs need more or less. Instead of just going by what the food label says to feed your dog, try to keep an eye on your dog’s body. If you notice that your dog is gaining a bit of weight, cut the food intake back a bit.

Never give your dog milk! It’s not necessary for his body and he doesn’t have the proper enzymes to digest it anyway. Feeding your dog cow’s milk can lead to chronic diarrhea and leave him with an upset stomach, among other health problems. Stick with plain old water for a healthy and hydrated dog.  This is important for your dog care, health and nutritional needs.

Make your own dog biscuits to provide your beloved canine with the healthiest treats. Most commercial products are over-loaded with chemicals that aren’t good for dogs, despite adding flavor and aroma. Use quality ingredients and tell your dog what you’re doing in the kitchen! Get him all excited and let him taste-test as soon as they’re cool.

When you have a dog, make sure that you give him enough water. Water should be made available to your dog at all times of the day, particularly in the summertime. Put his water bowl somewhere where no one will trip over it, otherwise you’ll be cleaning your floors all day!

Make sure there is one policy in your home for giving your dog table scraps. While some owners do not give their dog any table food at all, yet others wait until the family meal is done. This causes less confusion on the part of your dog and makes meals much easier for your family.

What you need to know about dog breeding

If you breed your dog, do so responsibly. The AKC advises all owners of pure-bred dogs to try to advance the breed and discard all other motivations, such as money or experimentation. Consider the repercussions of your actions before allowing your dog to mate and create a litter of puppies. Remember that you are ultimately responsible for your dog care, health and nutritional needs.

Make sure that your female dog is contained well if she’s in heat. This will help to prevent an unwanted pregnancy. A male dog can smell a female in heat from up to five miles away. She could also cause fighting among other dogs, along with becoming pregnant with an unwanted litter of unknown origin.

Your dog and your holiday

Take care to keep your dog cool while traveling during the summer by car. Even with your air-conditioning on, the dog may become over-heated in his pet carrier. A simple and low-cost countermeasure is freezing a few gallon jugs of water and placing them near him where he can curl up and cool off.

Whenever you travel with your pet, don’t skimp on the packing. Of course, you need to be well supplied with his food, water and any medications he may be on, but experts advise that you also bring his grooming supplies, vaccination paperwork, tags and an extra leash. Also, bring a flat sheet for when your dog will be on hotel furniture.

Never bring your dog with you while flying during the hot summer months, unless the airline provides a climate-controlled cabin for him. Most of the major carriers use the same area for pets as they do for cargo, meaning your dog will have to endure some pretty high temperatures as you travel to your destination, jeopardizing his safety.

Flea and other external treatments

Check your dog for parasites and take preventative measure. Flea and tick collars are important. Keep in mind certain collar work better in different seasons and geographic areas. In addition, check your dog’s ears. Ear mites are common. Also, check the dog’s stool to ensure he hasn’t picked up worms in his digestive system.

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Be careful with canine flea treatments. A lot of the ones on the market have ingredients that are 1000 times more potent than what is considered safe by the EPA and it may be a cancer risk for children. Talk to a vet about safe alternatives and keep little kids away when applying any flea treatment.

Don’t bathe your dog after you have applied a flea or tick medication. Some medications tout that they are waterproof, but they only mean against rain or swimming. They will largely wash away with a dog shampoo, rendering the treatment ineffective. If you must bathe the dog after a treatment, use a soap free shampoo.

If you have medications at home, ensure that it is safely hidden away and out of the reach of your dog. Just a few of your pills can be disastrous for the dog, inducing a heart attack or seizure. If your dog happens to get into any such pills, call your veterinarian or animal poison control immediately. This point is extremely important for your dog care, health and nutritional awareness.

Other tips for keeping your dog safe and happy

To make your dog happy and increase the bond between you, try learning how to give him a massage! It’s been shown in recent studies that structured massages are highly beneficial to a dog’s health and can improve their overall well-being. This activity can also be very relaxing for you as well.

Show your dog that you love him. Like many things in life, many owners pay much more attention to bad behavior than good behavior. This causes problems with dog behavior. You should ensure you give your dog positive reinforcement. When you do this, you’ll see much better behavior from your dog.

Do not make training your dog seem like a chore. Dogs pick up on this negative energy and will have a difficult time learning if you are not in the right mind frame. Make it fun and try to look at it as a bonding experience with your pet. When your dog is having fun, they will learn their training quicker.

The pads of your dog’s feet can become dry and cracked, so make sure that you moisturize them regularly. Ask your veterinarian for advice on which product to use. Avoid using moisturizers that are intended for humans, because they can make the pads too soft and your dog may get hurt.

Conclusion

Once you are equipped with great advice about your dog care, health and nutritional needs, you will be better prepared for the day to day life with him. You will be better capable of dealing with any issues that occur. Take notes and post them around your house so when you question what you are doing, you can get a quick reminder of what you should do.

As was mentioned in the opening of this article, dogs make amazing pets. They are loving, loyal and protective. To be a responsible dog owner you must educate yourself on the best dog-care tips and advice. Apply the knowledge you’ve learned from this article to properly care for and forge a better relationship with your pooch.

 

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