How to Be a Better Dog Owner
We all love our dogs, however, there are always little adjustments that we can add to the way we care for our dogs. Just a small tweak can bring on fantastic results. I put together a series of 10 bullet points that I use with my own dogs, I hope you might find something helpful.
How’s your dog’s diet?
1 Give green beans instead of treats. They can be raw, cooked or even frozen.
2 Add coconut oil to the food. Just half a teaspoon to start with, they do seem to like the taste.
3 Add some fish oil to their diet by occasionally adding sardines (my dogs favourite) tuna or salmon.
4 Make some healthy dog treats. Using just a few ingredients, tasty and healthy snacks can be made instead of shop bought treats. There are hundreds of recipes online and they are all super quick and inexpensive. My dogs love frozen dog treats in the summer
2. Does your dog get enough exercise?
1 Next time you go for a walk, take a ball with you, the dog will cover more ground chasing after it and you can get some recall training done at the same time.
2 Change your route, your dog will pick up different scents and get more stimulation from a different area.
3 Walk with a friend who has a dog, this will make your dog more sociable and you will cover more miles having a good old gossip!
3. Is your dog Insured?
Take out a policy or open a savings account for your dog’s care and add to it each week.
4. Is your dog mentally stimulated?
Make your dog work for his food or treats by adding a food puzzle.
This interactive dog toy has kept my miniature dachshund amused for hours. I bought this two years ago and it is still in good working order.
5. Is your dog chipped?
Collars with name tags can be taken off. A chip is permanent and the best way to get your dog returned to you if he is lost or stolen.
1 Brushing or combing will not only improve the dog’s appearance, it will give you the chance to get a close look to see if he has any skin irritations, fur loss, hot spots, sore paws etc
2 Keep your dog’s nails short with specially designed dog clippers.
You don’t have to be an expert to massage your dog. Just gently stroking and running your hands over the dog’s muscles will make both of you feel bonded and relaxed.
Buy good quality, durable dog toys that cannot be destroyed or chewed up, possibly causing a blockage in the intestine. Try to buy toys that will stimulate the dog and relieve boredom.
This toy is my dog’s constant companion, it makes her feel safe and she carries it round in her mouth. Sometimes she forgets where she has put her ‘puppy’ so I keep a spare, just in case we lose it.
1 Check your dog’s teeth and gums regularly, brush with some special doggy toothpaste if you can. I have tried with the rubber thimble type thing and find it works better than a toothbrush.
2 Make sure they have regular dental chews. Mine love fish skin cubes. The smell of fish is very strong so I keep mine in an airtight container. They are 100% natural so no nasty additives.
3 I always sprinkle a tiny amount of Plaque Off on my dog’s food. We achieve good results with most dogs. However, there was one dog it didn’t work for so we booked her into the vet for a scale and polish. Plaque Off is very economical because a little goes a long way, so a small pot lasts for ages.
4 Coconut oil will also help with dental hygiene. In addition, it is natural and helps give a beautiful shiny coat too.
5 Just the addition of some raw carrot or apple can cut down on dental plaque and freshen breath.
Always keep an eye on your dog and watch out for anything out of the ordinary. Check that the dog is eating, drinking, urinating, emptying bowels and playing as normal. Detecting early signs that your dog is unwell can prevent serious illness and costly vet bills.