Dogs can provide you with companionship and love. Having said that, understand that dogs are not automatically this way. You need to train them, and you have to be aware of how you must care for them. This article is packed with tips about owning a dog, so read on.
Your home must be dog-proofed. Prior to bringing the pooch home, check that the whole home is safe. Make sure all of the medicine is put away and the cleaning supplies are up and safe. Certain common house plants are toxic, so remove them or keep them out of reach.
Consider teaching your dog hand signals along with verbal commands. Consistency and practice are key to teaching a dog these non-verbal commands. Many owners get frustrated and resort back to verbal commands, but a well-trained dog should understand both. Try using only verbal commands when the dog is out of sight range, but when close up, only use the hand signals.
Avoid insisting that your dog socialize nicely with every other passing dog. Experts recommend that your dog be able to tolerate introductions through sniffing and eying with another animal, but say forcing the issue can create problems. Accept your dog’s lead when meeting and greeting other animals and allow for natural interaction.
If you are planning to take your dog on an extended car-ride, talk to your vet about motion sickness medication first. Avoid feeding him before setting out to prevent queasiness and vomiting and make sure you buy him bottled water if you are traveling to any destination that is known to have issues with water quality.
Take your grown dog to the vet at least once a year. The vet will check to see if the dog’s vaccines up to date. In addition, the vet will check the dog’s teeth and vital signs. If any major health or behavioral issues come up between annual checkups, you should see the vet earlier.
When you are training your dog, it is always best to incorporate the use of hand signals in addition to using verbal commands. Your dog might learn commands more easily using this approach. Always associate the spoken command and the hand gesture at first and choose the system that works best later on.
Keep your dog’s teeth in tip tip condition. Just like humans, a dog can suffer from toothache, gum disease and even tooth loss. Regular brushing will ensure that that his teeth and gums stay healthy and strong. Without regular brushing, it is estimated that dental disease will affect up to 80% of dogs by the age of three. As well as dental cleaning by a vet, make sure that you brush your dog’s teeth regularly.
If you are struggling to get your pet to behave during a grooming session, apply positive reinforcement. With your words and your tone, praise your dog for anything little thing that he or she does well during the time you are working with him. Give him a treat when you are finished, so he begins to associate grooming with something good. You should turn your dog’s behavior around in no time!
Taking care of a dog takes work but is not impossible. While it has a learning curve, the advice you’ve read here has you on the right track. This will help you take the best care possible of your dog.