A dog will require care, attention and commitment to care for it throughout its life, which may be 10-15 years or more. The commitment required includes not only the routine feeding, care and time spent with the dog, but also the provision of veterinary treatment if the dog becomes ill. The following is a discussion of dog care:
Brushing your dog’s teeth
How to brush your dog’s teeth?
The first step is to choose an appropriate toothbrush for your pet. Save time by not buying a child’s toothbrush, which is often too difficult for dogs. The ideal dog toothbrush will have a long handle, an angled head to fit the mouth better and extra soft bristles. Another option is the finger toothbrush that fits over the fingertip.
The second step is to select the appropriate toothpaste. The best pet toothpaste contains enzymes that help control plaque. Try to avoid toothpaste with baking soda, detergents, or salt that are sometimes found in human toothpastes. Fluoride can be added to help control bacteria. Instead of placing the toothpaste on top of the toothbrush, try placing it between the bristles. This allows the toothpaste to spend most of its time next to the teeth.
The third step is to insert the toothbrush with the paste into the dog’s mouth and brush all the teeth. Most dogs will accept the toothbrush if you approach them gently. If you can start when they’re young, it’s fairly easy, but even older pets will accept the process. Start slowly, you can use a towel or piece of gauze to clean the teeth, both front and back, in the same way, eventually you will use the toothbrush. Do this twice a day for about two weeks and your dog should be familiar with the method. Then take the pet toothbrush, soak it in warm water and begin brushing it daily for several days. When your dog accepts this brushing, add the pet toothpaste.
The sticks and bones may splinter and cause choking or vomiting, or they may perforate the mouth, throat, or intestine. Hard bones can easily damage teeth. Instead, use hard, non-chipping toys to play fetch or let your pet bite.
A pet that chews can crush soft latex toys. If the toy includes a squeaking mechanism, the squeak can be easily swallowed or cause choking.
Towels, socks, underwear, and other clothing or similar materials can be swallowed by a disruptive pet, causing a bowel obstruction.
Some dogs like to chew or eat rocks – bad idea! Stones can cause broken teeth and a serious bowel obstruction if swallowed.
Be careful if you offer your pet rawhides, as they can also cause intestinal obstruction if swallowed, and some are preserved with arsenic, which is toxic to pets.
Be careful of sharp objects that can cut into the skin, legs, eyes, or ears.
Paint and wood preservatives can also be toxic to your feathered friend.
Exercising your pet
Whenever you are near a road, or anywhere your dog can cause discomfort if he runs free, you should keep him on a leash. Both you and your dog will be much happier if he is well trained. Remember that not everyone is as fond of dogs as you are and you should respect their feelings. Keep your dog under control at all times. Part of your walk should take your dog over rough ground as this will help keep his nails short.
Don’t make the mistake of over-exercising your dog if he is still growing, as his bones are not yet strong enough to cope with the extra stress this places on him. Little and often it is the rule until your dog grows to his full potential. Remember that large breeds mature later than small breeds. Ask your breeder or vet for advice.
Regular and varied walks are not only essential to keep your dog fit. They also give him the opportunity to explore and experience new stimulation, including meeting other dogs. This will help him develop into a happy, well-adjusted dog and prevent him from developing problematic behavior. Be sure to supervise your dog’s exercise. Don’t let him stray, and never leave him outside to be cared for while you’re away.