Humans domesticated dogs thousands of years ago. That very history shows that man and dog have been partners for so long for a very good reason. However, dog ownership comes with a great responsibility to make sure your pet is happy, healthy and well-cared for. This advice will help you keep your dog happy and healthy.

While it’s great to show your dog affection, you shouldn’t kiss them. It is unsanitary to be licked by a dog. Dogs tend to dig through garbage cans, drink out of toilets and explore the hind quarters of other animals. There is a belief that the mouth of a dog is cleaner than that of a human. This is absolutely a myth!

You should take your dog to the vet at least once a year. Even the best dog owner will find it difficult or impossible to detect the first signs of health troubles, like a tooth infection or arthritic joints. Annual checkups can catch these things before they become major problems.

Being a dog owner can be very costly. Dogs need good food, medical care and other supplies. This can add up to $500-$1000 a year. Pet insurance can be very helpful since emergency medical care for your dog can cost thousands of dollars, depending on the circumstances.

TIP! It takes quite a bit of money to take good care of a dog. Every dog is going to need supplies, good food, and will also need medical care.

When bringing dogs on vacation, it pays to take a photo of them to keep on your phone. You’ll be prepared to take effective action in case your pet gets lost. You can use your recent photo to illustrate just what your dog looks like as well as to print up flyers, if necessary.

If you want to keep your dog outside, build him or her a small shelter. Your dog could get sick if he is left outside in the cold or if the ground is wet. Keep your dog safe from wind, rain and snow by providing it with a house with lots of room and a dry floor.

When a dog behaves badly, correct him immediately. If you let it fester it can only make the problem much worse and eventually the dog becomes extremely difficult to train. It is possible that your dog could injure a person, and that person could be you! So correct unwanted behavior right away.

Yearly physicals help you and yearly vet checks help your dog. Even the best dog owner will find it difficult or impossible to detect the first signs of health troubles, like a tooth infection or arthritic joints. Regular checkups will assure these issues are caught before they turn into something big.

TIP! Yearly physicals help you and yearly vet checks help your dog. Your dog is not able to talk, so it is not easy to know when he’s got arthritis or an aching tooth.

Your dog’s claws must be trimmed. If they start to curl, your dog may feel a lot of pain. You can trim them yourself with a pair of store bought clippers. If you aren’t comfortable with this, invest a little money and take your dog to the groomers.

Schedule a visit for your new dog with your local veterinarian. Make an appointment as early as possible. This allows the vet to look him over and schedule the necessary vaccines. Consider having your pup spayed or neutered as there is already an overpopulation problem.

Solid leash training is a must for any dog. He should know the “heel” command, stay close to you and not veer far ahead or drag behind. Following this tip can make walking safer for your pet, and it can also make walks more enjoyable for both of you. Even if you’re using loose leashes for walking here and there, make sure the dog understands this command.

Always make sure to keep any prescription medications away from your dog. The same holds true for over-the-counter meds. Your dog could have a heart attack or a seizure if it swallows some pills. If your pet does manage to ingest some medicine, contact the vet right away.

TIP! Store your prescriptions and over-the-counter medicines in a safe place where your dog cannot get them. If the dog gets near the pills, then just a few of them could do serious harm and result in a trip to emergency room.

You can always choose to foster a dog for a few weeks if you’re not sure about making the full commitment of dog ownership. Many abused and homeless animals are in shelters waiting for adoptions, but there is a lot of overcrowding and many resources are scarce. Lend a hand by fostering a dog, and determine if it is a good fit for you and your family.

If you are seeking a dog of a particular breed, be sure to check with your local animal shelter first. A pure bred dog is just as likely to be abandoned at the pound as any other if its owners can no longer take care of it. Simply call your pound and see what they have. You could get the dog you are looking for and save a life in the process.

As a dog owner, you need to repay your dog’s affection with responsible, reliable care. It is simple when you have the right knowledge, of course. Use these tips to make your dog a lot happier.

Look into the flea treatments. A lot of these medications have ingredients that can be harmful to children and can cause cancer. Bring up the subject of alternative and family-friendly treatments the next time you see your vet, and always be sure to apply these treatments when no children are present.

TIP! Make sure you are using the right flea treatments on your pet dog. They contain carcinogens proven to cause cancer in kids.

We really hope you enjoyed our article. If you have a dog and want advice making sense of his or her behavior, we would strongly recommend that you check out the following resource which provides a lot of information about puppy training: