As a pet owner, it’s normal to ask yourself, ‘Am I taking good care of my dog?’ You might think you’re doing a good job but are missing the mark somewhere. Contrarily, you might be handling pet care much better than most people. The best way to tell if you are doing the right thing is to compare your care strategies to an organization that has been doing it for many years. Check your methods against our list of the following practices before you ask, ‘Am I taking good care of my dog?’
Pamper and Spoil Your Dog
Here’s the answer to ‘Am I taking good care of my dog?’: A good pet owner is someone who takes the time to spoil and pamper the dog. You can include three things in the category of spoiling and pampering. Those are:
Playtime Sessions: Dogs are animals that need a lot of attention to feel pampered. They’re less independent and introverted than cats. Thus, you’ll need to put forth a lot more effort to give a dog the attention it needs than you will have to with a cat. That’s just the way it is.
Playing with your dog twice a day for at least 15 minutes per session is a normal way to relate with the pet. Pampering your dog will occur if you add an extra play session and go the extra mile.
Pet Grooming: Grooming is a regular part of pet care. Therefore, you should do things like bathing your dog, clipping its nails, trimming its hair, etc. However, if you want to pamper it, you’ll take it to visit the pet groomers.
Pet groomers have special school training that gives them the ability to provide stellar customer service and precise grooming. Your dog will feel like a million dollars if you treat it like it’s worth that much.
Treats and Toys: Treats and toys play a massive part in pampering a dog as well. Thus, you should have a healthy collection of chewable toys, noisemakers, and attractive items for your puppy to chase. You should also have a stash of your dog’s favorite treats so that you can reward them when your dog does something spectacular.
Treats and toys aren’t only for when your puppy performs, however. Sometimes, you should give the dog these types of gifts because you want to express your love. The dictionary definition of pampering is to indulge with every attention. Gifting your dog is giving it all types of attention, and it’s a good thing because it lets your dog know you care.
Go for Regular Checkups
Taking your dog to regular veterinarian visits is an essential part of taking care of it. The visits might be uncomfortable, but they are necessary to detect the early stages of ailments, treat current illnesses, or safeguard your pet against new conditions (shots, medicines, etc.). An acceptable practice is to take your dog to a high-quality veterinarian at least once a year.
You will do your part as a pet owner and caretaker by keeping up with the annual visits. You can put in a little extra work by taking your dog to the vet twice a year and scheduling appointments at the first sign of trouble as well. Doing those things will ensure that your pet has an extra long life and feels well regularly.
Avoid Giving Them Allergic Reactions
Keeping a close eye on allergy symptoms and taking immediate action are both practices that reliable pet owners do. The next thing to do is to avoid doing things that cause those allergic reactions. Foods, fabrics, and natural elements can cause adverse symptoms in a dog with allergies. Some of the most common symptoms are as follows:
Stomach Problems: Your dog most likely has a food allergy if you notice vomiting, diarrhea, or gas that occurs only after eating certain foods. Your duty as a caring pet owner is to investigate the matter and find out what item or items cause those symptoms. Then you must take steps to ensure that your dog doesn’t get hold of those foods or drinks in the future.
Scratching/Scooting: Your dog might be allergic to a cleaning agent, carpet ingredient, or something else if you notice excessive scratching or scooting. You might also see red spots or bumps on your dog’s skin. It may take some time to pinpoint the irritant, but you can help your dog avoid it once you do. You can also visit a veterinarian and request allergy treatment such as a gel, shot, or pill.
Hair Loss: Excessive hair loss could indicate a food allergy or a contact-related reaction. Monitor your dog’s habits and take notes to zero in on the allergic reaction’s cause.
Excessive Sneezing/Coughing: Excessive sneezing and coughing could indicate a food allergy or a problem with smoke if you reside in a smoking household. Your dog may also have an issue with an item you currently use to clean your home.
Breathing Issues: Your dog might have asthma if you hear it panting and struggling to breathe. It would be wise to schedule an appointment with a vet so that he or she can examine your pet and do testing to confirm whether an allergy or illness is present. Then you’ll need to help your pet avoid the activity or item causing the problem.
Swollen Joints: Swollen joints is another problem that strongly indicates a food allergy. The condition suggests that inflammation exists in other parts of the pet’s body.
Being assertive enough to notice the signs and then taking steps to minimize your dog’s allergic responses are two ways to be a stellar pet owner. You won’t have to ask, ‘Am I taking good care of my dog?’ if you do those things.
Give Them Enough Outside Time
All dogs need a certain amount of outside time to be happy and thrive. You don’t have to introduce your pet to outdoor living, but you need to take it outside for at least the minimum amount of time recommended by experts.
Specialists recommend allowing your dog to spend anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours outside daily. You can engage in various activities during this time to show your pet love and care. These are some examples of the activities you can allow your dog to partake in:
Free Roaming: You could let your dog do some free roaming in the yard or neighborhood if it’s well-mannered. Many pet owners allow their dogs to explore nearby areas in this manner.
Frisbee Chasing: You can also get involved in your pet’s fun times by partaking in activities like frisbee chasing and toy tossing.
Tricks: Teaching your dog some new tricks while spending time outside is also positive practice.
Playtime With Friends: You can also take your pet to a dog park and let it mingle with other dogs.
The list of activities you could let your dog do is endless. Be sure to get the appropriate lawn care if you intend to entertain your dog in your backyard. The answer to the self-inquiry, ‘Am I taking good care of my dog?’ will be yes every time.
Brush Your Dog’s Teeth
Dental care is another responsibility that will make the answer to ‘Am I taking good care of my dog?’ yes every time. Dogs need their teeth brushed daily, and they need them brushed properly to prevent tooth decay and gum disease.
Additionally, you must take your dog to a dental care provider for gum disease treatment if you notice any of the signs of gum disease. Some of the most common symptoms of gum disease in a dog include:
Bad Breath: Your dog may suffer from halitosis despite your efforts to brush its teeth. Such persistent foul breath may be a sign that your pet is suffering from gum disease. A professional can examine the situation and either confirm or deny it.
Bumps/Lumps in the Mouth: Bumps or lumps in the mouth usually indicate an adverse dental condition. Consider taking your dog to a vet to get checked out if you notice something like this while checking your dog’s mouth.
Blood: Your dog’s gums might bleed if it has gum disease. Thus, you might notice blood in your dog’s food bowl or on its chewing toys.
Brushing your dog’s teeth regularly and correctly will cut down on the likelihood of gum disease development. The correct way to brush your dog’s teeth is to start in the front of the mouth and use dog toothpaste and an official dog toothbrush.
You’ll need to brush the teeth in a circular motion to be effective. Use dental chews if your dog is a little resistant when you try to brush its teeth. The dental chews will help cleanse its mouth during times when it may be stubborn or unwilling.
Don’t Ignore Bad Signs
You might question yourself about, ‘Am I taking good care of my dog?’ when it comes to emergencies. You can feel highly confident in your ability to care for your pet if you stay attentive and take action whenever you notice bad signs. Take your dog to a veterinarian for minor issues and a pet hospital for severe problems. These are some of the signs that require an immediate and appropriate response from you:
Excessive Thirst: You’re right to be concerned if your dog suddenly suffers from excessive thirst. The issue could come from dehydration or a severe kidney condition that needs immediate assistance.
Constant Lethargy: Fatigue and lethargy can come for a variety of reasons. Some causes, such as high temperatures or lack of rest, are normal. However, your pet could also be tired because of significant health issues. You will take good care of your pet if you address these issues quickly and try to find a solution.
Repetitive Vomiting: Repetitive vomiting is a sign of food poisoning or stomach problems. You should address it quickly.
Drastic Dietary Changes: A sudden change in your pet’s eating habits can also indicate a severe problem. For example, you might notice that your dog seems to have no appetite at all for days, which could be because of a stomach bug or illness.
Know What to Expect As Your Dog Ages
You might also ask yourself, ‘Am I taking good care of my dog?’ regarding the aging process. Educating yourself and knowing what to expect as your dog ages are two ways to ensure that you are an excellent pet caretaker.
A generally healthy dog can live anywhere from 10 to 13 years, and you should start thinking about its end-of-life process around year eight if it has had no major health issues. Consider giving your dog a funeral service if you see it as a member of the family. You can discuss funeral planning and burial options with your family and then choose an agreed-upon method.
Considering cremation is an excellent way to add a positive answer to the question, ‘Am I taking good care of my dog?’ There are many benefits to choosing a pet cremation service instead of a traditional burial. One advantage is that you can take your dog’s remains with you if you decide to relocate.
Secondly, cremation removes some of the emotional elements of body handling and can make the transition easier for some of your family members. Another benefit of leaning toward cremation is that you can save money. Burials can be expensive, especially if you live in one of the states where you have to bury your pet in a cemetery. Thus, you might want to consider cremation as a wallet-friendly option.
Are you still wondering and asking yourself, ‘Am I taking good care of my dog?’ You can feel confident that you are taking exemplary care of your puppy or dog if you do all the above-mentioned things. You’re a good pet owner if you make decisions that will ensure your pet has a high-quality life and then leave the earth in peace. You can always take steps to improve if you find that your caretaking methods are not in line with what you read.