Taking care of your dog's health doesn't have to be complicated. Along with plenty of love and attention, following these 6 tips from our New Hope vets could help your dog live a longer, healthier life.
Your Dog's Health
You love your pet, but caring for the health of your canine companion is a big responsibility. There are some things that you as a dog owner can do to increase your dog's health and well-being:
1. Make Sure Your Dog Is Eating Right
Your dog's well-being will depend significantly on the quality of the food that they eat. To help keep your dog healthy, speak to your vet about their recommendations for your dog based on age, breed, and lifestyle. Your vet will be happy to offer tips for finding just the right food to meet your pup's nutritional needs.
2. Make Sure Your Dog Maintains A Healthy Weight
Obesity has been linked to a number of serious conditions in dogs including diabetes and joint pain, so keeping your dog at a healthy weight is essential for optimal health. Once you have chosen a nutritious food for your pooch, your vet will be able to calculate the optimal number of calories your dog should consume each day. Once you know the number of calories that are appropriate for your dog, you can work out exactly how much you should be feeding your dog at each meal.
3. Make Sure Your Dog Gets Plenty Of Exercise
Different breeds have different exercise requirements and physical capabilities. While some dogs' health can be maintained with a quick walk around the block, high-energy breeds may need an hour or more of vigorous exercise once or twice a day. Adequate physical activity not only helps to keep your dog's body in good condition, but it can also help to prevent mental boredom which can lead to destructive behaviors or anxiety. Be sure to ask your vet or breeder about the appropriate amount and types of exercise for your dog. Walks, playing outside in dog-friendly areas, and social time at dog parks are all great ways to ensure your pooch gets plenty of exercise.
4. Make Sure Your Dog Attends Annual Wellness Exams
Diagnosing and treating conditions as early as possible can help to ensure the very best outcomes from treatment. Even when your dog seems healthy, annual veterinary exams play an important role. These physical checkups are all about prevention, monitoring your pet's overall health, and checking for early signs of developing issues. Your vet will discuss your dog's diet, exercise and other lifestyle factors with you, ask if you have any concerns about your pet's health or behavior, then perform a comprehensive physical examination. Once the exam is complete your veterinarian will discuss any findings with you. If anything concerning has been detected your vet will make recommendations regarding diet, diagnostic testing, or treatment.
5. Make Sure Your Dog's Vaccines Are Up-To-Date
Our New Hope vets believe that vaccinations are essential for helping your pet live a long and healthy life. Your dog is protected from a high number of contagious, potentially life-threatening diseases. Most states require by law that all pets be vaccinated against rabies, but there are a number of other serious conditions that vaccines protect dogs against including parvo, distemper, and panleukopenia.
6. Make Sure Your Dog Is Protected Against Parasites
Ticks, fleas, and mosquitoes can all harbor organisms that lead to a range of diseases that seriously threaten your dog's health and longevity. If your dog is unprotected against these parasites, a bite from one of these parasites could cause your dog to become gravely ill. Speak to your vet about the most effective ways to protect your pooch against a full range of tick-borne diseases, heartworms, and other parasitic conditions common in your area.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.