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Got a dog? Chances are, your world revolves around them. For many of us, our dogs are the light of our lives, bringing smiles to our faces from the moment we wake up in the morning to the moment we go to sleep at night. Dogs really do become our best friends and valued members of our families. This is because of their loving nature, their great companionship, the entertainment they bring us and so much more. So, it’s not surprising that if you’re a dog owner, you’re always going to be on the lookout for ways to keep your pooch happy and to keep their tail wagging. Here are a few tips and tricks you can try out to keep your pet as happy as possible throughout the duration of their lives.

Walks

Every breed of dog requires a daily walk. This is essential for their wellbeing, as routine exercise will help them to keep fit and in shape. It improves strength, stamina, flexibility, balance and a range of other skills that will keep your dog well. It can also help them to maintain a healthy weight. On top of this, walks tend to be the highlight of most dogs’ days. It allows them to get out and about, seeing the world, sniffing scents, socialising with other dogs and generally enjoying themselves. Make sure that you know how much walking your dog should get on a daily basis and stick to it. Some breeds only require short walks, whereas others require hours of exercise day in and day out. Your vet will be able to make recommendations based on your dog and their individual needs. When walking your dog, make sure that they are always in a harness and on a lead. This is more comfortable and safe than the traditional collar and lead combination and can also prevent your dog from getting in trouble with roads, other animals and other threats. If you want them to be able to walk further, consider stretch leads.

Grooming

If you have a dog that requires regular grooming, it’s absolutely essential that you keep on top of this. Breeds that require regular grooming tend to have curly or non-malting fur, so grooming helps to cut it down and keep it fresh and clean. Unlike other dogs, breeds like Poodles, Bichon Frises, Lhasa Apsos and more, won’t shed their fur as clean, fresh fur grows through. Instead, their fur stays in place and just keeps growing, which can result in dirty, knotted or matted fur if you don’t keep on top of a good grooming schedule. Make sure to seek out a reliable and quality groomer in your local area and ask them or your vet how regularly your pooch should be being groomed. Most breeds will need a wash and brush out every two weeks and a wash and cut every month. Sure, not all dogs like going to the groomers, but this is essential for their overall wellbeing. It’s much easier to keep on top of their fur, than for them to go through the unpleasant experience of dematting and deknotting because it has been neglected for too long.

Proper Dental Care

Proper dental care is crucial for maintaining a dog’s overall health and well-being. Just like humans, dogs can suffer from various dental issues such as plaque, tartar, gingivitis, and periodontal disease. Regular brushing of your dog’s teeth is the cornerstone of good oral hygiene. It is recommended to use a toothpaste formulated specifically for dogs, as human toothpaste can be harmful if ingested by pets. Additionally, incorporating dental chews and toys into your dog’s routine can help reduce plaque and tartar buildup. Regular dental check-ups with your veterinarian are essential to catch any potential problems early and to ensure your dog’s teeth and gums remain healthy.

Diet also plays a significant role in a dog’s dental health. Providing a balanced diet that includes dental-friendly foods can aid in maintaining clean teeth and fresh breath. Some dog foods are specifically designed to promote oral health by reducing plaque and tartar. Moreover, raw bones and certain vegetables like carrots can act as natural teeth cleaners. Avoid giving your dog sugary treats and table scraps, as these can contribute to dental problems. By integrating these practices into your dog’s daily routine, you can help ensure they have a healthy mouth and prevent the development of more serious dental issues.

Routine Veterinary Care

Every dog needs routine checkups at the vets. This allows the vet to keep track of treatments they will need on an ongoing basis, such as vaccinations, flea treatments and worming treatments. Your vet will be able to keep a record and set a reminder for when these treatments need to be carried out or refreshed, helping you to ensure that your dog is protected and safe from common illnesses on an ongoing basis. Routine check ups at the vets can also ensure that your dog is in good health, giving your vet the chance to give them a good once over and highlight potential issues that may be developing. This could range from joint issues with aging (you can visit this page for more support with this) to identifying that your dog is growing overweight and may need to be put on a special diet for a while. You should also make sure to get a dental check up while you are there and to ensure that your dog’s anal glands are emptied.

Pet Insurance

Sure, all pet owners have to fork out for routine veterinary care from their own pockets. But when it comes to more major treatments or surgery, which can result from illness or injury, you should take out pet insurance. Pet insurance will ensure that your pet can get the ongoing treatment they need, as and when they need it, regardless of whether you have enough to pay for it yourself. By paying a monthly premium on a good policy, you will be able to claim back major veterinary costs that could otherwise be difficult to pay. This will guarantee that your pet can have the care they require regardless of your own finances. Make sure to choose comprehensive policy from a good and trusted provider.

Interaction

Dogs love interaction. We are their world and you need to make sure that you’re giving them the attention that they need. Some dogs will require more attention than others. If you have a dog that is a companion breed, they will thrive from spending all day with you. These dogs need ongoing love and support and are often referred to as “lap dogs” as they’d happily sit on your lap all day if they could. Other breeds may be more independent, but will still seek out a fuss and a cuddle throughout the day. Make sure that you’re giving your dog the attention that they deserve, regardless of how busy and demanding your schedule may be.

Mental Stimulation

Some dogs are much smarter than others and will require some mental stimulation to keep themselves entertained and happy. There are ways to do this yourself, by playing with them and teaching them tricks, but when you are busy, they don’t have to be left bored. There are plenty of dog games that encourage your dog to use their mind in exchange for treats. These often take the form of boards where treats can be deposited within a puzzle and your dog needs to play the game to get the treats to dispsnese. Browse a variety and make sure to introduce plenty of new options to your dog so that they can be consistently challenged in a healthy and productive way. This is particularly important for breeds like collies and shepherd dogs.

Socialisation

Not all dogs are very social with other dogs and animals, but some dogs really love the company and social interaction with others like them. This is where dog parks and doggy clubs can come in useful. These provide spaces where your dog can get their social fix, spending time playing with other pooches who are social too. It’s a good idea to socialise your dog from a young age. Then they are more likely to get on with other pooches as adults. Look for groups and facilities in your local area that cater to this. You may also find groups on social media that host large scale dog walks for specific breeds, such as Bichon Frise walks or Golden Retriever meet ups.

These are just a few ways that you can treat your dog well and keep their tail wagging. Hopefully, some will inspire you and you’ll be able to provide your pooch with the best quality of life possible!