From the time your furry buddy becomes a part of the family, keeping them healthy and happy is your primary concern. You’ll schedule regular appointments with the vet for checkups, vaccinations, and advice on the right kind and portions of dog food. Reading up about identifying potential illnesses and signs that your pet needs help is one of the most important aspects of caring for them. Here’s some additional information about dog care that you’ll find invaluable.
Choose the Right Food
A well-balanced diet contains a healthy blend of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, along with vitamins and minerals for tissue building, strength, and proper growth. That’s true for both humans and our pets, though quantities of nutrients differ. Considering the deluge of pet food brands lining grocery store shelves, it’s understandable if you’re unsure about what to choose. Ask your vet questions like:
- What should you look for on the labels?
- What do terms like “meat meal” and “BARF” mean?
- What kinds of regular human food can my dog handle, if any?
Meat is Not a Must-Have for the Canine Diet
If your dog has lingering chronic health problems, a food allergy could be to blame. Consider trying a vegan dog food made with bio-available nutritious ingredients that’s loaded with vitamins, fiber, healthy oils, and omega fatty acids.
Meat is not absolutely essential for your dog to be healthy. When people think about meat, they tend to focus on protein. Your pet does need food with high-quality protein that includes essential amino acids for building tissues, producing hormones, and enhancing immunity. All of those amino acids are found in meat, but complete protein can also come from plant sources like yeast and fungi.
Be Careful with People Food
If you’re wondering if feeding your friend tables scraps is a good thing, studies now show that treats like steamed vegetables, whole grain pasta, and selected fruit bits are healthy supplements for the canine diet.
You can always balance home-cooked treats by lowering processed food portions. Since the dog’s skin and coat are good visual indicators of health, you’ll spot thick, glossy fur and boundless energy.
More processed people food is probably best to avoid. You’ll also want to be sure that if you choose to share your own food, it’s not in response to begging. Soon, you’ll have a dog whining for snacks every time you sit down for a meal.
It’s also possible that your dog would feel better with a generally higher quality of diet. If you’ve ever experienced a surge in energy after cooking at home more or trying out Dry January, you’ll know how important your body’s intake can be.
Exercise Your Dog with the Right Intensity and Frequency
Most pet parents are well aware of the importance of adequate exercise. But, a little-known fact is that you should incorporate regular exercise into your four-legged friend’s routine. A walk around the block with just occasional high-intensity activity is never a good idea. Like humans, dogs’ knees have a cruciate ligament that connects the end of the thigh bone and top of the femur. Proper exercise keeps the joint toned and functioning.
Without regular movement, the ligament can degenerate and weaken. A sudden spurt of activity could rupture the tissue, and you’ll end up looking into surgery and evaluating the risks of TPLO surgery complications.
Take care of your little furball with the right nutrition, exercise, vaccinations, and lots of love. They’ll repay you with a lifetime of joy and complete devotion.