We really care for the well-being of your pet, so we have put our heads together on how best you can take care of your dog at home. Between visits to Wiggle Salon, here are some tips to keep your dog healthy, clean and happy.
- Brush your dog’s teeth at least once a week. If you aren’t able to hold your dog’s face still to brush, then try this trick: put some peanut butter on toothbrush and mash it into the bristles. Hold the brush facing up to brush his top teeth, and then face down to brush his bottom teeth. Let him do all the work, just hold it for him so as he’s chewing the brush, he’s scrubbing his teeth at the same time.
- Hold his paws and ears. If he’s a little tired after a play session or long day, when your pet comes to lay down next to you, play with his ears and paws. Put your fingers inside his ears gently and feel around. Then hold his ears for an extended time. If he shakes his head or tries to prevent it, it’s OK. Don’t force the issue. Just try again. Same with the paws – play with his toes and toenails. Gently put your fingers between his toes. Don’t force your fingers in there if he has tiny toes. Just feel around all his paws and pads underneath his paws.
- Take your dog to exercise. You can hit two birds with one stone with this exercise. When you take your dog for a walk, try to socialize him with other humans and other dogs. If you don’t socialize your pet, you may find that he becomes aggressive around strangers at your home, including family members that rarely come by. It can be a bit embarrassing. To prevent this behavior, let your dog meet lots of different people, and dogs. Let him visit your neighbors, and have your neighbors come to your house so your dog will get used to other people besides the family come into your home.
- Keep your pet pest-free. Tick and flea medicines are not too expensive, but work amazingly well and the benefits are enormous. Fleas and ticks carry all kinds of awful parasites that will shorten your dog’s live and make him miserable in the meantime. You really owe it to you pet to take this simple but powerful precaution.
- Feed your dog quality food and make sure he always has fresh water. This seems like a no-brainer, but oftentimes the task of feeding and watering the dog is left to the children, who may not understand the importance of the responsibility. If you are feeding your dog once a day, and it gets forgotten, your dog will have gone two days without food. Don’t let that happen. Certainly don’t forget to make sure your dog has fresh water EVERY DAY especially in the summer, particularly if your dog stays outside during the day.
Besides the tips above, we wanted to give you some information that impacts your dog’s health. We know you want what is best for your pooch, so please consider the following recommendations.
Spay/Neuter Your Pet
We strongly recommend spaying (female) or neutering (male) your pets if you don’t plan to breed them. Studies have revealed that spayed and neutered animals are healthier and typically live as much as 23% longer lives. Neutered males have the chance of testicular cancer eliminated and it is also believed that neutered males have a decreased chance of prostate cancer.
Unaltered pets often lead riskier lives, with greater desire to escape and roam, and increased desire to get into fights with other animals.
Besides the health benefits, there is also the social responsibility to care for existing animals rather than allowing more to be born. More than 2.8 million healthy adoptable animals are euthanized each year, so do your part to reduce this number by preventing your pet from breeding. Neutering/spaying is the only 100% effective solution to the overpopulation of domestic animals.
Stay Current With Vaccinations/Medication
Your dog should have annual visits to the veterinarian. Your vet will keep your pet’s vaccinations current and prescribe a heartworm medication that every pet should take. You’ll spend less on health care for your pet if you keep your annual visits to the vet.
Microchip Your Pet
Microchipping your pet is a quick, easy, relatively painless procedure that will ensure that your pet can be identified by most veterinarians and county animal control workers. The process of microchipping a pet involves inserting a tiny microchip about the size of a grain of rice just underneath the skin of your pet. It doesn’t run on battery, it’s similar in function to RFID cards that you might find in a new book or magazine from the bookstore. A vet can obtain necessary information about your pet in just a few seconds by running their microchip readers across your pet’s microchip.
Microchipping isn’t expensive, so the benefits far outweigh the expense.