Every dog owner wants his or her pet to live a long and very healthy life. To make this possible, you need to give love and the right care to improve the quality of life of your furry friend.
Here are valuable health tips to help you do just that.
1. Follow a healthy diet
By slowly reducing your dog’s calorie intake, you can help him maintain a healthy weight at all times, which also promotes longer life.
The high-quality dog food you choose to give your beloved pooch also matters because any excess or harmful ingredients will endanger his health. In addition, you can occasionally add fresh vegetables to his food bowl to supply his body with a variety of other nutrients besides proteins from meat in his dog food.
When you feed your pet a high-quality diet, it will show in his healthy skin, shiny coat and bright eyes. All in all, a healthy diet strengthens your dog’s immune system, making him resistant to life-threatening diseases.
2. Promote regular exercise
Similar to humans, your dog also needs regular exercise. Ideally, your canine should get at least 60 minutes of exercise each day to regulate his weight and improve his health. The exercise doesn’t have to be an organized routine; you can simply let him play outside and run for a while in addition to the walks you take in the park or around your neighborhood.
When an animal doesn’t get enough exercise, it can make him overweight, which in turn can affect his overall health. Always make an effort to keep your dog at a healthy weight through exercise and keep track of how much he eats on a daily basis.
3. Keep your pet’s mouth clean
Tooth decay is a common and dangerous problem for most dogs. This is because, more than being a dental problem, it can cause serious infections throughout your dog’s body. Although most dogs don’t have picture-perfect teeth, you should still aim to keep their teeth and gums clean.
You can buy a special brush kit for dogs which contains toothpaste and a small brush. Make use of a double-headed brush at a 45-degree angle to be able to clean below the gum line. Brush your dog’s teeth at least 3 days a week and make sure not to use a human toothpaste since some ingredients in it can be harmful to dogs.
4. Allow him time to rest and relax
Even in dogs, stress has a negative effect as it can put them in a state of anxiety. Practice balance wherein your pooch can get enough exercise but also have time for independence and rest.
Mental stimulation is also important to keep your dog happy. A bored canine can develop depression, anxiety and illness. Extend your dog’s life by keeping his mind active. This can be done through socialization, training, games and other enriching activities.
5. Visit your vet for vaccinations and regular checkups
An ounce of prevention is always better than losing your dog. Make sure you go for regular checkups with your vet to detect health problems early while they still can be treated. Getting all the needed vaccinations can also save and improve the quality of life of your dog.
Even if your pooch seems outwardly healthy and fine, he should still visit the vet at least once a year for a general checkup. A wellness exam maintains your dog’s optimal health and gives you a record of your dog’s health history as he gets older. Stick to a regular preventative care routine for your dog for the best chance at a longer, healthier life.
6. Enjoy every moment spent together
It’s a sad fact that owners will typically outlive their pets and there is no miracle product that can extend their life beyond the natural lifespan. But with your enrichment, conscientious care and regular vet visits, you can give your dog extra years to spend with you. The time you have with your pet is a treasure; savor every minute of it to keep your dog happy and healthy throughout his shorter life.
The key to a dog’s long life lies greatly on his healthy lifestyle. Think of your dog’s well-being the same way you would a family member’s. Your furry friend can recognize the efforts you make for him and appreciates all your love, care and support.
Farah Al-Khojai is the Managing Partner of Pet’s Delight. A passionate entrepreneur, Farah holds a Bsc in Government from the London School of Economics. She is always on the lookout for new opportunities to develop and grow the pet and equestrian retail and wholesale market in the UAE and beyond, and is proud to be at the helm of the first and the largest pet care provider in the market representing world-class brands including Orijen, Applaws, Hunter, Savic, Flamingo, Ruffwear and Rogz.