How to take care of a dog

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Are you all excited about bringing home your new four-legged, furry best friend for life? Or are you the one who's still undecided about whether you should entertain any 'doggy adoption' thoughts? Or oh! Did you warm up to a puppy in the shelter yesterday, when he gave you that hopelessly adorable puppy-eyes look and you just whisked him away without doing the numbers or the thinking the thoughts- about your life together- in partnership- through thick and thin- about whether your dinner would sit on the table and under – about potty business in the potty place which is not your favorite rug, by the way – about famous furniture legs looking less worthy from happy puppy-teeth marks?

Well, no matter where you're at with your situation about adopting a dog and bringing him home to your family, this blog will list the most critical steps about taking care of your dog.

First Things First: Identify Your Dog

This is a crucial step and goes beyond giving Toby his name and calling him Toby repeatedly so he knows it is HIS name.

Give your dog the security of an external identification by getting him to wear a collar and an ID tag that includes your name and telephone number. Ensure his coupling is not too tight around his neck and allows about two fingers to pass through between the collar and his neck.

Has your veterinarian microchipped your dog? A microchip, about the size of a rice grain, is inserted beneath their furry coat. This chip contains the contact details of the owner. So if ever the dog gets lost, a vet would be able to scan the chip and return the dog to its owner(s).

Your Dog Is A Child Forever, No Matter How Big He Grows

You probably already know this if you happen to have a dog. He's no grown-up, boring adult. He's a forever, happy child. That also means he has feelings and emotions just like us- humans. He should be treated with lots of love and affection. Since dogs don't understand human language, it is helpful to train dogs and get them to learn and obey some simple commands. It's best to teach them when they are puppies. How to train your dog is an excellent blog on training needs and details some handy tips on potty training, obeying simple commands such as 'stay', and keeping off your favorite furniture.

Exercise Your Dog

Dogs are living creatures and are packed with unbridled energy. It'd be tragic if you adopted a dog and did not give him the freedom, choice, or opportunity to play and run about (remember- he's a child in a doggie's body). Look for dog parks or dog beaches near where you live and take him there to run about unleashed and mingle with other dogs. Dogs love to 'socialize' with their kind, just like humans enjoy human company. Make sure you walk your dog in addition to some playtime. However, note that some dogs walk fast and some slow. Match your pace with your dog's, and it should not be the other way around. Pay attention to your dog's needs during a walk, and if he's panting hard, it means he's tired and thirsty. Take frequent breaks and allow your dog to sit under a shelter or a tree now and then. Let walks for your dog be fun, not a chore.

Change up the route now and then, and dogs are explorers. They love new areas. Please make sure they are always on a leash when you walk them.

Vet Visits

Make Vet visits a routine. It is essential to see the Vet regularly. Veterinarians (easier to say, vets) will be able to tell if your puppy or dog is healthy. When you take your dog to the Vet, be sure to carry along your dog's medical records, vaccination history, and current medication. Also, answer the Vet's questions on any observed change in your dog's behavior, appetite, or energy. How to Know When Your Dog Needs an Appointment at the Vet is an excellent place to start doing your research about vet visits.

Good Nutritious Food

Food for dogs is just as necessary for any living creature. It's fuel for energy and a basic necessity. However, food requirements and composition for dogs change according to the dog's age and physical condition. Check with your Vet on the nutritional need of your dog. As for any healthy diet, your dog's food should be balanced and a complete meal. As dog's age, their dietary requirements change. For instance, their teeth may not be as sharp when they get older and would require more easily chewable and digestible food.

There should always be enough fresh water for your dogs and nutritious food. It's best to clean out their water bowl every day and pour in clean water. Big dogs would empty their bowls very quickly during summer, so it's best to keep an eye on the bowl and keep it filled to the brim.

Spay Or Neuter Your Dogs

It is never a bad idea to 'alter' your dog. Why? Several reasons. Unless you are sure you (or someone you know) can adopt the litter of your dog, it helps if you did your part to neuter or spay your dogs so that you wouldn't inadvertently contribute to the population of homeless dogs who end up in shelter homes with only an iffy (if they are lucky) chance to be adopted and (if they are not as fortunate) have an 'if not, or else' Damocles sword hanging over their innocent heads.

Neutering or spaying your dog is also known to help them lead healthier lives. Spaying your female dogs helps prevent breast cancer and any infections in the uterus. Neutering for male dogs helps in preventing prostate or testicular problems.

Also, neutering male dogs makes them less aggressive and easier to handle.

Taking care of dogs is not child's play. It's fun but a tonne of work. Get a dog or a puppy if you're willing to invest time, energy, and love. It's a relationship that, once built, gives you back love like no other and a lifetime of happy life moments and memories.

Reference:, Ten Tips for Taking Care of Your Dog, How to Take Care of a Dog (with Pictures), Dog Care 101: How to Take Care of Dogs In Your Home

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Lucerne Valley, CA

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