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You’ve decided to go down to your local animal shelter and pick up your first pet. There were a lot of dogs and cats to choose from but you decided to go with the boxer who was giving you the sad eyes.
That boxer will provide you years upon years of companionship and love if you take care of it the way that you should. Dogs need exercise, a healthy diet, vet checkups, and regular teeth cleaning in order to stay happy and healthy.
It can be a lot to keep up with. Here are a few healthy pet tips that can make your new role as a fur parent a little easier.
1. Take Them for Their Yearly Check-Up
You shouldn’t wait for something to be wrong with your pet before taking them to the vet. They need to have a check-up at least once a year to make sure everything is going well health-wise.
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These visits are essential for catching potentially horrible issues early so they can be dealt with. It will up your pet’s chances for successful treatment by a large margin.
Like with human exams, your pet’s vet will take a look at everything from their breathing to their heart rate. They may also ask for a fecal or blood sample. Depending on what they find, your pet might have to be given an X-ray or EKG.
All these tests can be expensive but they’re less costly than surgery if you put off their vet visit until they get horribly sick.
2. Take Care of Their Teeth
Believe it or not, your pet’s teeth aren’t self-cleaning. They’ll rely on you to take care of their oral health to keep gum disease at bay. There are a couple of ways for you to keep their smile nice and shiny.
You don’t have to brush your dog’s teeth twice a day as you do yours but you should at least brush them a few times a week. It’s essential to stop plaque build-up. Grab a toothbrush and toothpaste that’s specifically designed for your pet.
Human toothpaste will harm them if they were to ingest it. Besides, they’ll respond better to a beef-flavored toothpaste than a mint-flavored one. We will tell you that your pet will fight you when it comes to teeth brushing at first.
You’ve got to train them to accept it. They’ll have to get comfortable with the idea of your touching their teeth with your fingers before you try to implement an oral hygiene routine. Touch their muzzle and as gentle as possible, run your finger across their teeth.
Once they allow you to do this without a fuss, you can put a little of their toothpaste on the brush and try to slowly introduce it to them. it may take a couple of tries before they let you actually brush their pearly whites.
If your pet doesn’t want anything to do with the toothbrush, try giving them dental treats instead. These treats are designed to freshen their breath and get rid of any stubborn plaque buildup.
They taste better than the toothpaste and it makes them feel like they are being rewarded. It’s safe to say that you shouldn’t have any issues with them accepting them.
Schedule a Professional Cleaning
Your vet may have an easier time brushing your pet’s teeth than you do. It’s more expensive than purchasing a bag of treats or toothpaste but it’s worth it.
Your vet is trained to spot any problems with your fur baby’s oral health and address them to you. The vet is also equipped with everything they need to make your pet’s teeth shine.
3. Be Choosy About What You Feed Them
Your pet needs a healthy diet in order to have a shiny coat, good skin, and a killer immune system. That means that you have to reach for the good stuff.
Dogs and cats have different nutritional needs. As far as your dog goes, they need food that’s comprised of animal-based protein, fiber, essential vitamins and minerals, fish oils, and grains. Cats should have food that’s packed full of vitamin A, fatty acids, and taurine.
If for whatever reason you can’t get your pet to eat the way they should, talk to your vet about CBD for pets. Giving it to them will stimulate their appetite and ease nausea if that’s the source of the problem.
4. Let Them Go Out to Get Some Exercise
In order for your pet to stay at a healthy weight and not develop heart or lung disease, they need a good amount of exercise every day.
Your dog needs to go on at least two, 20 minute walks each day. You might be able to get your cat to go on walks too. It all depends on their temperament.
They can also get exercise through toys. Play ball with your dog, pick up a scratch post for your cat, invest in movable toys like mechanical mice. It will keep your pet healthy and stop them from destroying your furniture out of boredom.
5. Don’t Let Them Roam Around the Neighborhood
Don’t open your door and let your pet out to play or do its bathroom business unsupervised. There are tons of dangerous situations that they could get into including traffic, contagious diseases, other animals, and poisons.
If you haven’t had your pet spayed or neutered yet, that raises an entirely different issue. Always accompany your pet outside. Even if you have a fenced-in yard.
Pet Tips to Keep Your Fur Baby Happy and Healthy
Taking on a pet can be a huge responsibility. There’s a lot that you have to do if you want to keep them happy and healthy. As long as you use these pet tips to stay on top of their needs, you should do just fine as a pet parent.
For everything, you can’t fix or don’t know, consult their vet. They are there to help you through every step of your fur baby’s life.
Need help picking out food for your dog? Don’t know how to keep them well-groomed? Check out our blog daily for even more pet tips for owners.