So you got yourself a dog from the pet store or probably saved a life from the streets or the local shelter. But then, you have no idea where and how to start caring for your dog.
There’s a reason why dogs are dubbed man’s best friend — and that’s because those furry creatures love with the kind that knows no bounds. Unconditional, they say.
With that, it only makes sense for you to love them unconditionally, too! You can start with these basics, adapted from The Human Society’s list of dog care essentials.
Balanced Diet & Fresh Water
Food and water are very important to your canine buddy. There are many ways to feed your dog, depending on which diet best suits your furry friend, your budget and your schedule.
You can go for commercially available dog food, BARF (bones and raw food), home-cooked meals and other types of feeding. It is wise to consult a veterinarian to determine which diet will work best.
Whichever way you’ve decided to feed your dog, access to fresh and clean water 24 hours a day, everyday is of utmost importance.
Having a dog means having another family member. Dogs are not only pets — they’re also family. Keep them company, tell them about your day, share to them your secrets… they’ll never tell anyone else… except maybe the neighbor’s dog.
An ID tag or a microchip ID will work to bring back your dogs in case they’re lost. ID tags come in all shapes, sizes and material — from fancy engraved ones to old-school written ones.
Microchip IDs, on the other hand, are chips implanted by veterinarians. When scanned, these chips reveal your name, address, contact details and other vital information about your dog.
Of course, your dog getting lost is the last thing you would want to happen but your dog getting lost without an ID is a sure heartbreak.
Up-to-Date Vaccinations & Regular Vet Check-ups
Dogs need to be vaccinated against rabies as well disease like canine distemper, infectious canine hepatitis, leptospirosis, parvo virus and parainfluenza.
Aside from that, dogs also need to be dewormed and checked regularly for ailments and health problems that could be well hidden like heartworms, ehrlichia and more.
It helps to keep pet medicines on-hand once given the go-signal by veterinarians. That way, health emergencies won’t be so much of an issue.
Aside from good food, water and love, your dog also needs to be exercised daily. A run in the lawn, a jog early morning or a few minutes of play everyday will do wonders for your canine buddy’s health and temperament.
Every dog needs a leash — for walking outside to pee, for a quick trip to park and almost every activity in public places. Unless you’re confident your dog won’t cause trouble off-leash, do take the reins when you are out.
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