We all love our dogs and want them to live a healthy and happy life. Unfortunately, dogs can’t talk or tell us when something is wrong. Here are 10 tips to maintain your dog’s healthy lifestyle.
1. High Quality Diet
- Dogs that are fed a high quality diet have healthier skin, brighter eyes and a shinier coat.
- A healthy diet strengthens their immune system, intestinal health, mental health and keeps muscles and joints healthy and much more.
- A poor diet can shorten your dog’s life span.
- If you have noticed a lack in energy or a recent gain in weight, it could be his/her diet.
- Give your dog a constant supply of fresh water.
2. Regular Veterinary Visits
- Find a recommended veterinarian and schedule routine exams.
- Schedule 1-2 exams per year. This depends on your dog and his/her breed.
- Puppies and older dogs should be seen more frequently.
- Ask your doctor about different types of vaccinations.
- Keep your dog lean. Obesity can shorten your dog’s life span.
- Dogs that are overweight are more likely to develop health issues.
- Exercise can help with separation anxiety and other destructive behaviors.
- Dogs typically need 1-2 hours of exercise per day, depending on size and breed. Do your own research.
4. Dental Health
- Pet owners often overlook the importance of keeping their dog’s mouth clean.
- Plaque and tarter build up can lead to serious health issues.
- Bad breath can be the first sign.
- Don’t wait until there is a problem. Focus on preventative dental care immediately.
- If left untreated, oral health issues may even lead to heart and kidney disease.
- Brush your dog’s teeth regularly or use oral treats and/or rinses.
- A professional cleaning may be required. Talk to your vet.
- Fleas and ticks can be the source of allergies, anemia and tapeworms.
- Consult your veterinarian for the best products on the market.
- Being happy and content can actually increase the life span for both people and dogs.
- It has been proven that having a dog can lower blood pressure and decrease anxiety and depression.
- Show your dog some love and give him/her the same benefits.
7. Not Enough Play
- A recent study revealed that dogs who don’t play enough can suffer from behavioral issues such as anxiety and aggression.
- Not enough play can also result in whining, jumping and not obeying simple commands.
- Scientists are beginning to agree that play is the key to a dog’s happiness.
- Buy your dog some new toys and play with him/her.
- Grooming is about maintaining both your dog’s physical health as well as their appearance.
- Grooming helps to check for any skin diseases, rashes, fleas, ticks or issues with their ears, teeth, nails and eyes such as infection.
- Regular brushing removes hair, dirt and dandruff and brings out the natural oils in your dog’s fur.
- Training keeps your dog safe.
- Make sure your dog knows the basic commands. Sit, stay and come.
- If your dog escapes from his/her leash, these commands will be vital.
- Practice simple commands and use a reward system when a command is completed.
- When training, never yell or say, “no” to your dog when they get a command wrong. This will break his/her spirit and discourage them. Only reward him/her when they’ve properly completed the command.
- A reward for a job well done will boost your dog’s confidence.
10. Proper Housing
- Keeping your dog inside while you’re away will prevent a number of dangers.
- A roaming dog is susceptible to car accidents, predators, diseases, poisons and more.
- Do a safety check inside your home.
- Make sure your doors and windows close and lock properly.
- Look for weaknesses or holes in screen doors and windows.
- If you have a fenced in yard, walk the perimeter to check for possible escape routes. Examine gates and fences for damaged areas and holes under the fencing. Repair where necessary.
Following these tips can provide a long, healthy and happy life for your dog.
If you have any tips or comments you would like to add, please do so below.