It is not easy to own a dog. Issues like finding the best dog food, getting quality medical care, grooming and regular exercise have to be fully considered. How can you ever remember everything you need to do? Learning these basics will get you off to a great start with your new dog.
It can cost a lot to take care of a dog. Every dog requires good quality food, general supplies and medical care; this can range in cost from $700 to $1000 per year. Getting into a vet if you have an emergency can cost quite a bit of money, sometimes in the thousands, so you may need pet health insurance too.
It’s very important to make sure that your home is safe for a dog. Don’t take a dog into your home without being sure that it is safe from top to bottom. Store things like meds and cleaning products in a safe location, and be sure to keep any indoor trash cans behind a cabinet. Certain common house plants are toxic, so remove them or keep them out of reach.
Yearly physicals help you and yearly vet checks help your dog. Since your dog doesn’t talk, you may have difficulty figuring out if a tooth starts hurting or where arthritis is developing. Taking your dog for a yearly checkup allows relatively minor problems to be detected before they turn into major issues.
Anti-flea products are dangerous. Some of them contain chemicals that can increase the risk of cancer in children, and are 1,000 times as strong as the safe levels recommended by the EPA. Talk to the vet to determine if there are other options for your dog.
Do not overlook your dog’s bad behavior. Ignoring it for any length of time will only make it that much more difficult to contain later and you never know what could happen as a result of it now. The dog may harm somebody, even you, so control them.
Certain dog breeds are susceptible to some health problems, so make sure you know what is typical for the breed of dog you have. Find out what health problems to expect and learn how to prevent those that your dog is prone to developing. Your vet can also tell you how to give your dog the best odds for overcoming any conditions that are typical for his breed.
Stimulate your dog mentally and physically with plenty of exercise. Teach your dog to get your newspaper as well as other things that are useful in your home. They’ll feel like a useful family member and the constant reinforced training will maintain their sharp thinking skills.
Take care any time a female dog is in heat, as you likely do not want her to become pregnant. Male dogs can smell her scent from up to five miles. This may cause a fight or impregnation if a male dog spots her.
Identification will be great in the event that your dog gets away from you. A popular way to ensure the return of your dog is to use a breakaway collar and ID tag. Include your dog’s name and your phone number on the tag. Have you considered micro-chipping your dog?
It’s not that unusual for dogs to cut themselves after stepping on discarded debris or broken glass. If your dog experiences a cut, wash the area with antiseptic and put a bandage on it. If the cut is deep, check with your vet.
When the weather heats up, ticks and fleas become active. Try using a flea comb to remove any fleas that you find. To rid your dog of fleas and ticks, look for products that get rid of them. Ask your vet what they recommend.
Be careful about the kind of food your dog is eating. There are a variety of kinds of dog food on the market; you should choose something that is age and size appropriate. Feeding leftovers to a dog can save money, but a proper diet is harder to maintain with them eating leftovers.
If you’re eating a snack, you sometimes will feel like it’s a good idea to share with your dog. Certain foods are okay for this, but some foods are not good for dogs. Your should not give your dog grapes, caffeine, or chocolate, for instance. These food items can seriously harm your dog.
Never judge a dog’s health simply by how cold or wet its nose is. There are many reasons for your dog’s nose to be cold and wet even if the dog is sick. Instead, monitor your dog’s health through energy levels, demeanor, and appetite. They give you a better indication as to the state of your dog’s health. A dog’s temperature is checked using a rectal thermometer.
Before getting a dog, think about how much free time you really have in your life. Wanting a dog is a piece of cake, but actually taking care of one is harder.
Dog ownership is a long and complex adventure, and you never know when some of the advice you’ve just reviewed will come in handy. Cultivating a solid base of knowledge on the subject will make you into a more responsible, reliable dog owner. Use this information, and you and your dog can spend many happy years together.