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How to Be a Better Dog Owner?

by Maria L. Searle
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how to be a better dog owner

If you have a pup and you’re a first-time or long-time dog owner, it’s important to commit to being the best pet owner you can be. It can be challenging. When times aren’t so happy and joyous, your dogs are still responsible for keeping them active, healthy, and comfortable.

Fortunately, there are lots of ways to be an amazing pet owner. If you want to do right by your canine and are curious if there’s more you can offer, here is a little bit about how to be a better dog owner.

Budget for Monthly Pet Savings

It’s a financial commitment to own a dog. Costs include dog food, vet care, pet supplies, accessories, and more. If you aren’t already, set aside some money monthly for a pet savings account for future expenses.

Make Them the Most Comfortable Bed

Redo your dog’s bed. Whether it’s in its crate, a separate dog bed, or just a pile of blankets, ensure your dog has a soft, calm, and private place to go where it can rest and feel at home without having to jump up on the couch or a chair.

Keep Up with Their Vet Appointments

Make sure your dog is up to date with shots and vaccinations. It should also have a reliable local veterinarian and be seen regularly to maintain its health.

Select High-Quality Dog Food

Research the best dog food for your dog’s breed, size, and age. There are hundreds of brands, including popular ones like Open Farm dog food. Your dog may also have a health condition that requires a specific diet. Be mindful of this. Ensure everything you give them – from kibble to human food – is carefully selected.

Engage Your Dog with Toys in Rotation

Every few weeks, rotate new dog toys and score some oldies. They have a variety of toys for different uses. Toys provide your dog with a chance to play. Rotating toys in and out keeps their attention and doesn’t burn out your dog on the same batch of toys.

Puppy-Proof Your Hat

Remove hazards for dogs. Move breakable items away. If your dog likes to chew on items, put them elsewhere. Ensure electrical cords are locked. Block off parts of the house you don’t want your dog in. Also, move out any toxic plants.

Fence In Your Yard

A dog owner with a backyard has the advantage of fencing it in and letting the dog roam free. This is a fantastic benefit for dogs, allowing them to off-leash outdoors and move around without constantly being lugged on a leash.

Ensure They Are Not Overweight

If your dog is not getting enough activity or overeating, it will likely become overweight. This can dramatically increase the likelihood of your dog developing several health issues. Reduce your dog’s food intake if overweight and increase its activity level.

Assemble Their Paperwork in a File

You may need to find half of your pet’s paperwork for vaccinations, prior vet bills, and identification information. Try to find it, assemble it in a file, and collect it together. You will already have the documentation if there’s an emergency or need to refer back to a pet-related expense.

Invite Your Pet Out With You

Dogs love to come with you even if you’re going to the grocery store for something. Invite them out to more places with you. Try to find hobbies or activities you can do with them together.

Research Your Dog Breed

Every dog breed is different regarding what it needs for physical activity, what health issues it may be prone to later in life, and its personalities. The more you know about your breed, the happier you will make your dog by learning how to treat it.

Groom Your Dog Every 3 Months

A long, thick fur dog should be groomed every 4-6 weeks. A dog with short, fine hair should go every 8-12 weeks. If you do not take your dog to a groomer, you can groom them at home by combing their hair, bathing them, and providing a haircut when/if needed.

Reward Your Pup With Treats

Especially while training, ensure your dog is appreciated with treats. Though dog treats aren’t essential, they let your dog know you appreciate them, and it’s a nice reward that will keep them motivated.

Make a Schedule If You’re Struggling

If you forget a chore here and there or struggle to remember to feed your dog, set up a schedule. A daily and weekly schedule can include times to feed your dog, walk, exercise, and more. If these tasks are split between household members, make a public chart for everyone to follow.

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