Many of those who purchase dog products online do so because they are trying to find food, toys, bedding and more that will make their beloved pet both happier and healthier. At the same time, some products can make living with our pets more convenient, too — e.g., self-filling feeding bowls — but that’s more of a side note.
We all want our dogs to be healthy, first because we love them and they are a member of the family. Second, however, we want it because vets’ bills are so darned high! Below are some simple tips for keeping your dog as healthy as it can be.
1. Don’t Buy Into Rumours About Mixed Vs. Pure Breed Health
If you’re still choosing a new dog for you and your family, then you often hear a lot of “conventional wisdom” on how mutts and mixed-breeds are always better when it comes to a doggo’s health. It’s not said without reason, and there are some advantages to enjoy, but the idea that pure breeds are inherently unhealthy is wrong.
There are actually many naturally healthy pure-breed dogs you can choose, so if you do have a preference, or there are pure-breed dogs in your area in need of adoption, don’t be put off by their ‘blood status.’
2. Learn About Breed-Specific Ailments in Advance
Despite the existence of many healthy dog breeds, there are still many who suffer from common ailments and problems in life. Pugs are a popular small-dog breed, as are French Bulldogs, but both are known to have respiratory problems. German Shepherds are beloved bigger family dogs, but they suffer terribly from hind leg deterioration as they get older, especially if they’re overweight.
Learning about your new dog’s specific potential for illness will help you stay ahead of the curve, and act in specific ways to keep your new pet healthy and happy.
3. Regular Exercise
We all know that dogs love it when it’s time for walkies, but it’s more than just a hobby when it comes to their health. Nearly all dogs have a real need to get outdoors for some exercise and fresh air, both for their physical and mental health. Some breeds may surprise you at how happy and willing they are to be a couch potato — the lightning-fast whippet, for instance — but they still have a great time when they go out.
Regular exercise, as it does for humans, keeps your dog fit and in shape, and reduces their chances of suffering from random periods of illness brought on by their inactivity or overweight build.
4. No Human Food
When you consider your dog a member of the family, it’s hard not to be tempted to feed them from your own plate. Why should the dog be content with its bowl of dry biscuits or sloppy tinned meat when there’s fried chicken or chocolate mousse on the table?
Well, cooked chicken on the bone is very dangerous for dogs, for one thing, because the dried bones splinter and shard in their throats. Chocolate made for human consumption is also highly toxic for dogs. In fact, many human foods are absolutely unsuitable for canine consumption.
5. Walk Them On a Leash
Finally, for your dog’s health and safety, you should really walk them on a leash, no matter how friendly or well-behaved you think the animal is. First, your dog can be as friendly as it wants, but when it runs up to other dogs, it can provoke violent (and even deadly) reactions from other dogs. Second, when your dog is roaming around, they are likely to eat things from the ground, some of which may well be dangerous for their health.
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