When adopting a dog, you need to make sure that you can care for them. Not everyone is up to the challenge, especially when they have different-sized residences or personal needs. That is why dog care needs to be established before you adopt a puppy or a full-grown adult.
Dog Care Tips
Always research the breed if you are getting a purebred. For mixes, inquire about possible family history if a shelter or owner has that information handy. We have some general tips on how you can be an ideal pet parent.
What A Dog Needs To Be Happy
Space – Regardless of size, your dog needs enough room to play and run around during the day. A small dog may find a two-story building exciting and sufficient, but larger breeds may need regular trips to the park or a yard big enough for them to have fun.
Enrichment – Never neglect playtime. Games and toys should stimulate your dog, and encourage them to run around and get exercise. Go on regular walks, so that you aren’t woken up in the middle of the night for a sudden bathroom break.
A Leader – You need to be the prime influence on your dog’s life. Establish yourself as someone they can follow and trust. Remain calm when training them, and reinforce that your dog is part of your family now. Even if it’s just you two, you are still a team.
A dog’s age will generally determine how many meals they need for optimal health. Unweaned puppies need to be bottle feed around the clock before graduating them to solid food– we don’t advise this route unless you are volunteering at a shelter with abandoned puppies or helping out a mother that needs help with her litter.
Between the ages of eight to twelve weeks, dogs need four meals a day. Later they need three meals a day when between three to six months, two meals a day when between six months to one year, and one meal a day after the dog is a year old. With that said, always check with your vet if your puppy has specific diet requirements, especially as they get older.
Never raise a dog on a vegetarian diet. They can eat some fruits and vegetables, but they are carnivores mainly. In fact, do not get a dog if the idea of eating meat is unpleasant for you. Grapes are poisonous to dogs as are avocados, unripe tomatoes, onions, garlic, nuts, mushrooms, cherries, and more. If feeding safe fruits and vegetables to your dog, remove inedible parts like rind and seeds, and cut them into small pieces.
Dog Care Facts
Spaying and neutering will lengthen your dog’s lifespan and improve their behavior. It also means you are less likely to have unwanted puppies in your life; not every pet owner is ready to help rear a litter.
Schedule regular appointments with your vet and groomer. Brush on a regular basis, and have a tooth comb for fine-haired dogs such as Yorkshire terriers. Make sure you clean your dog’s ears and pull out stray hairs. While a groomer or vet can do this, in longhaired breeds the hair can collect water and cause ear infections. This in turn makes the grooming process more painful. You can save your groomer some time by cleaning the airs with dog-safe solution and cotton balls.
Clip toenails frequently. If a dog’s nails get too long, they can become crooked and dig into the skin. Check how long they are growing, find the knuckles, and avoid clipping any skin.
Brush their teeth to prevent later health problems, which can lead to decay and the canines in particular requiring removal. Teaching your dog to not fear the brush and eat dental treats is a lot easier than having to sedate them for a surgery early in life.
Every dog should receive training as soon as possible. This makes life easier in the long run for you and your dog. With toilet training, for example, you can make sure that there are no accidents in the house.
Start on leash training and remain patient. Many cities and regions require dogs to stay on their leash when they’re outside. Puppies eventually learn to acclimate, with proper instructions. As an added benefit, your dog is less likely to run away during a walk, which will cause less stress and worry for everyone.
Learn More About Pet Health With Rescue Strays
At Rescue Strays, you can rely on our expertise to help animals in need receive proper care and their needs met. We rescue dogs and cats that need our help, and provide all the space required for them to roam while remaining safe.
Reach out to us today to learn more about ideal pet care. From fresh water to regular walks and sustainability, we are your top expert on dog care.