It’s natural that you would love having a dog. Dogs have been great pets for thousands of years. It’s always a great idea to get a dog, but you have to remember that you are also taking on some responsibility when you bring a dog into your house. Here are some ways you can handle those responsibilities.
Keep on top of fleas. Not only can fleas cause infection in your dog, if one is swallowed, your pet can get tapeworms as well. Speak to your veterinarian about the best prevention method, but remember that this is not a one shot deal. You will have to continue your efforts over the life of your pet.
When giving your dog a bath, make sure that you only put on shampoo that is intended for canines. Using lukewarm water, get the entire body wet and then begin applying the shampoo to their face, working your way down their body. Wait a few minutes and then take a washcloth and wipe off the suds from your pet’s face. Wash off the rest of the shampoo as well.
When preparing to groom your pet, start the session off on the right foot by helping your dog relax. Spend a few minutes simply petting him, starting with the head and then rubbing the back, paws, belly and even tail. Once you feel your dog is happy and content, begin grooming him.
Ask your vet the amount of food your dog needs daily. Most dog food packages include guidelines but keep in mind that these instructions might not be adapted to your dog. Therefore, ask your vet the acceptable amount of dog food your dog needs to ensure its health and well-being.
If your dog spends time outside, he should have a good house. You can purchase one or build one yourself if you are handy. This is especially important during wet weather. Keep your dog safe from wind, rain and snow by providing it with a house with lots of room and a dry floor.
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.
Groom your dog frequently. Keep them clean and reduce the amount of hair they shed by brushing them frequently. When the weather warms up, start checking them for ticks and fleas daily. Dogs generally require a few baths a year. Before you give your dog a bath, make sure to cut or comb out mats and tangles. Rinse their coat thoroughly to avoid dirt sticking to any soap residue.
If you are a very enthusiastic owner of a pure-bred dog, join your local AKC. They are an active social group where you can share your love for your dog, learn a lot and make new friends too. The experience can also help prepare you and your dog for entering contests and winning shows!
Always be sure that your dog understands that you are the master if you want to have a well behaved pet. This is important because if your dog believes that he is dominant over you, then you have a much smaller chance of getting it to obey your commands and behave according to your wishes.
Put your dog through obedience training. A well-trained dog is a joy to live with for both you and them. Teaching them simple commands like “Come,” “Heel,” “Sit,” and “Stay” can help curb or prevent troublesome behaviors in no time. You can either teach them yourself, or you can find out about obedience courses by contacting the SPCA or the local humane society for class recommendations.
Having a dog isn’t all fun and games. You have to give yourself some time to really think about what you’re doing, and to act accordingly. You can use the tips here to help you to know what you need to do. You can always have a happy dog, if you take the time to give it a little thought.