The Beginner’s Guide To Dog Health And Care – Dogs Running
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The Beginner’s Guide To Dog Health And Care

We are responsible for keeping our dogs healthy.

It can be difficult because the needs of other countries are different from ours, but also so similar.

Dogs live as long as humans do with the right diet and exercise. They also thrive when their emotional and mental needs are met.

Care for your dog, including making health-conscious choices that are right for them, begins the moment you bring him home and will continue until their last day with you. It is one of the hardest, beautiful and wonderful experiences of your life.

You will learn much. There will be regrets. Sometimes you will just follow your gut.

My ultimate goal with writing is to teach you how to sort through the vast amount of information, research and advice available, as well as myths and mysteries, so that you can help your dog to live a healthy and happy life.

Benefits of Pets - The Beginner's Guide To Dog Health And Care

How to Feed your Dog

No one diet is right for every dog. Some dogs are healthier on cheap kibble while others feel better on fresh raw food with rare proteins such as alligator or kangaroo.

Although our dogs are descended from wolves who eat wild prey as a part of their diet, this does not mean the ideal diet for a dog should exactly be the same. Natural isn’t always the best. Animals in nature are less healthy, suffer from tooth fractures and gastric issues, among other things.

We can only do our best to offer the freshest and healthiest snacks, toppers, and treats within our budget. Find out what you should feed your dog.

Regular Vet Care

A wellness checkup should be performed on dogs at least annually by their vet.

Dogs need to be protected against dangerous viruses such as parvovirus, distemper and other diseases from the time they are puppies. The law also requires that you vaccinate for rabies your dog every three years.

Choose additional vaccinations such as kennel-cough, leptospirosis and giardia. They can help protect your dog when you take it to places like parks, boarding or daycare kennels and groomers.

Heartworm is a severe condition, which can have life-threatening consequences. It’s hard to treat. You can easily prevent heartworm disease by administering a monthly preventative to your dog, available only with a vet’s prescription. This is because your dog must test negative for heartworms before you start him on preventative.

You can also have your dog undergo a urine test for diabetes and infection, as well as a blood test for abnormal white blood cells or liver enzymes.

Even if both you and your dog don’t enjoy vet visits, your veterinarian is still your friend. Your vet can tell you if your pet is healthy, whether they offer dietary suggestions, and if there are any health concerns. You can always ask your vet for help!

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Home Care

Your dog will need daily care at home to stay healthy between vet visits.

If they have long hair that is prone to matting, brush their coat at least once a week, and as much as twice a day during the shedding period.

Trim the nails of your dog 1-2 times a month, using a grinder.

You should brush your dog’s mouth every evening. You can use dental gels and wipes if brushing your dog’s teeth is too difficult. Use only a toothpaste made for dogs, such as Petsmile.

Common Dog Health Issues

Learn about your dog’s breed to find out if they are susceptible to inherited diseases.

Small dogs and toy breeds are prone to issues such as a collapsed trachea or anal issues. Other issues include luxating patellas, reverse sneezing, and luxating femurs. These can be uncomfortable at times, but also quite dangerous.

Watch out for these signs:

  • Itching or scratching may indicate an allergy, dry skin or fleas
  • A redness, heat, or discharge could indicate an infection in any part of your body. It is important to treat the infection as quickly as possible because it can spread.
  • Indigestion can be caused by a poor diet, stress or gastric obstruction. It could also indicate parvovirus. Consult your veterinarian if stomach pain persists for more than 24hours, or earlier if the symptoms are severe or you see any bleeding or your dog appears to be very old or young.
  • Problems breathingrequires an emergency visit to the nearest veterinary hospital
  • Seizures, collapses, and fatigue can also be signs of an emergency
  • Discolored or pale gums, eyes, and eyelid liningare all emergency signs

If you are experiencing similar symptoms to your dog, you should give them the same level of care (or more) that you would provide for yourself. When dogs are in pain they cannot communicate it to us. They will continue eating, playing, wagging their tails, etc. even though they may not be feeling well.

You can ask your veterinarian or an emergency vet for help if you are not certain if the situation is urgent or a dog can wait.

The Best for Your Dog

Each pet parent is different in terms of their access to finances, resources and travel. Our dogs only ask that we do our very best and never give up on them.

  • Keep your dog’s weight healthy
  • Walk for mental stimulation and exercise as much as you can
  • When you can, train your dog and give him new tricks.
  • You should feed your dog the highest quality food you can buy.
  • Ensure you can access emergency funds, or at least an emergency credit line.
  • Always be willing to learn from your dog, as well as from resources on dog care and training.

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