We all claim our dogs to be a part of the family, but, when all is said and done, are you sure you know the best way to be a pet parent? Having a dog is a fun, joyous, and truly enlightening experience. In just a short time together, your four-legged friend will become your favorite companion, your best cuddly toy, and your strongest defender.
Pets do so much for us, so it’s time we learned to do the same and make their lives the very best that they can be. With that in mind, here are nine ways to treat your pup right and be a better dog owner.
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Table of Contents
Be a better dog owner by: Choosing the right dog
To start off your dog ownership journey right, you need to pick a canine that actually fits you and your lifestyle. Buying a dog on impulse, without properly researching the breed, can spell disaster later down the line. This would inevitably leave you and your new pooch less than happy.
Make sure you evaluate your lifestyle carefully, considering your:
- experience with animals, and
and make sure you opt for a dog whose needs you know that you can meet.
Be a better dog owner by: Pet-proofing your home
It’s going to be difficult for your pet to remain happy and healthy if the home that you provide them is full of dangers. For this reason, you should research what household products, foods, and other items can harm your pet and work to reduce these risks.
Ensure any potentially toxic items are kept in places your pet can’t reach and secure wires, doors, furniture, and other things to prevent any injuries. Pet proofing your home does take time, but it’s more than worth the effort.
Be a better dog owner by: Providing the best food
When it comes to picking out food for your four-legged friend, you need to give the decision some real thought. You must ensure you pick a kibble or canned food suitable for their age, and, if possible, one that is also specific to their breed or lifestyle.
Even if you can only afford the super cheap brands, you must still ensure that they provide all of the nutrients that your dog needs. If you plan to give dog treats now and then, you should ensure that they are fairly healthy too.
Be a better dog owner by: Looking after their teeth
As much as we may love our dogs, the stinky breath is less than pleasant. Thankfully, though, you don’t need to put up with it. Few people know how to fix bad dog breath, but it can actually be quite simple.
All you need to do is keep your dog’s head out of the toilet, cut down on carbs, and look after their teeth. You can do this by brushing them regularly and offering a bone to chew on. As well as the fresher breath, this will help to prevent any oral diseases or dental problems.
Be a better dog owner by: Spending quality time together
Being a great dog owner is about so much more than feeding and cleaning after your pet. It needs to also know that you love it, which will only be shown if you spend some real quality time together. This means:
- taking walks together,
- playing with them, and just
- enjoying one another’s company.
If you want your dog to be a part of the family, then you need to treat it as one. You can’t spend every minute of the day together, of course, but the time you do spend should be special to you.
Be a better dog owner by: Finding them new friends
While your dog is sure to love playing with you, they are social, pack animals by nature, and as such, will also want to spend time with their own kind. With that in mind, you should head to your local dog park and see if there are any other owners looking for a playmate for their pet.
You can also consider doggy daycare and puppy parties to introduce your buddy to other dogs. If a friend or family member also has a pooch, a playdate is a great opportunity for you all to get together.
Be a better dog owner by: Teaching a new trick
No matter what anyone tells you, old dogs can learn new tricks. In fact, they’re able to focus better than most puppies, which will make the process a lot easier. While we all know we should train our dogs as puppies, you shouldn’t stop this training the moment yours knows how to sit, stay, and lay down.
Continuous practice is the key to long term success. Teaching and reteaching your dog certain tricks and lessons is also a great way for you to bond and spend time together.
Be a better dog owner by: Attending regular check-ups
Everyone knows to take their pets to the vet when they’re sick or acting unusual. After all, that’s how I knew my dog had a luxating patella. However, you should do so even when yours isn’t. To keep your dog at their healthiest, regular check-ups are absolutely crucial. This allows your vet to monitor your pet’s health and offer advice on how to improve it.
It also gives them the opportunity to spot any illnesses or injuries you may not have noticed yourself. These check-ups are quick and not very expensive, so there’s no reason to avoid them.
Be a better dog owner by: Investing in pet insurance
Although you will do your best to keep your pet healthy, there is always the chance that they will become sick or injured. The medications and procedures required to treat your dog could be quite costly, and, if you can’t afford to pay them, your little buddy is going to suffer. For this reason, you should invest in pet insurance to cover medical costs for your animal. Some companies and policies offer additional benefits, so ensure you shop around for the best deal.
Owning a dog may be fun, but it’s also much more than that. It is a privilege and a huge responsibility that needs to be taken seriously. Dogs aren’t accessories or toys that can be thrown aside and forgotten about when they’re not wanted. They are living creatures that need constant care, attention, and love. Remember the advice above to be a better dog owner.
StephanieCristi’s Top Recommended Pet Resources
- on-the-go collapsible food and water bowls
- heavy-duty carrier
- ID tag
- retractable leash
- peepee pads for indoor accidents
- for all other pet needs, check out Chewy.com
With all my love,