There are a lot of breeds of dogs, and lots of different families. Knowing what type you prefer and the best way to take good care of this kind of dog is important. Keep reading to learn about your pet and its health.

There are many pleasures derived from dog ownership, but it is also a serious financial commitment. Food, supplies and vet bills can add up to $1,000 or more per year. You should also look into purchasing a good pet health insurance policy to avoid high medical bills.

Your dog needs an annual physical exam from the vet, just as you need one from your doctor. Your dog is not able to talk, so it is not easy to know when he’s got arthritis or an aching tooth. Making an annual trip to the vet is the best way to discover and deal with these kinds of problems when they’re still manageable.

While you can hug your dog, you should avoid kissing your dog. It is unsanitary to be licked by a dog. Dogs go through garbage cans, toilet bowls, and love smelling and licking specific body parts of some other dogs. Keep in mind that an animal’s mouth is full of germs. This is completely wrong!

TIP! Fight the urge to feed table scraps to your dog. If you feed from the table, he’ll become a beggar and stop eating his own food.

Anti-flea products are dangerous. Some medicines can put your children in harms way. Talk to a vet about safe alternatives and keep little kids away when applying any flea treatment.

It can be really helpful to incorporate hand signals with verbal commands when first training your dog. Using signals such as these, your dog may learn things more easily. Every pet is different though, so use a combination of both verbal and visual cues and then determine what works the best.

Avoid cheap dog food. Cheap brands are full of fillers, preservative and even chemicals. Check with an animal advocacy group for a list of foods you should be feeding your dog. Your dog will thank you for feeding him a better food.

Purchase or construct a dog house if your dog must stay outside when the weather is cold. If the dog gets wet feet that could make him stressed out and cause other health problems as well. Protect your dog from wind and precipitation by giving him a shelter that has a dry floor and plenty of space.

TIP! Don’t force your dog to eat something. If you’ve bought a treat that your dog doesn’t seem to interested in, don’t try to make your dog eat it.

Give your dog rawhide instead of real meat bones. Real bones can splinter and can get caught in your dog’s mouth or digestive tract. Rawhide has been proven to be healthy for your dog. It is excellent for its teeth too, so do not give in to the temptation to give your dog a real bone no matter how hard it begs.

Take time and correct bad behavior when you first see it. If you delay too long, the behavior will get harder and harder to correct. This could lead to huge problems down the road.

If you decide to adopt a dog from a shelter, you should schedule an appointment with a veterinarian right away. A shelter is often a haven for kennel cough and other diseases. That is why it’s important to have a full checkup and a course of vaccinations before you bring your puppy home.

If you want to get a pet from a shelter, find a vet who can examine your new dog. A shelter is often a haven for kennel cough and other diseases. You should also get your dog all of his shots before bringing him into your home.

TIP! You may need to trim hair that grows near the dog’s paws to help keep it from matting. First comb the hair, then give it a trim.

Train your dog how to properly walk when on a leash. He should be on your side, not behind or ahead of you, and he should know how to respond when told to “heel.” Walking like this can keep them safe and help you enjoy walks too. Not having to hold the leash tightly will make going for walks easier.

Providing foster care for a homeless dog can be a great way to see if you are suited to care for a dog. Many abused and homeless animals are in shelters waiting for adoptions, but there is a lot of overcrowding and many resources are scarce. Become a foster parent to test the waters.

If your dog gets anxious about being away from you, or you want to give him a little treat, leave music on while you are at work. The music will calm the dog down, and they’ll feel like someone else is there. It might help with any anxiety issues.

Playing music in your home when you leave for your job may help your dog with separation anxiety. The sound of music could help him feel more secure and keep him company. It might help with any anxiety issues.

TIP! Be sure to give your dog proper political representation. Make sure that you know all legislation that may be going through your local system.

Be sure that your dog has some kind of identification in case it were to escape from your home. A popular way to ensure your dog gets back home safely is to make them use a breakaway collar that has an identification tag. Put your own name and contact information on it, along with your dog’s name. Having your vet equip your dog with a micro-chip is a good idea.

When you train your dog, don’t allow your efforts to be diminished by an excess of trainers. Having multiple people train your dog will only confuse him. Have one person in charge of their training and let the others reinforce what they’ve learned by respecting their methods and using the same rules.

Take your dog to the vet regularly. You need to make sure your pet is caught up on shots, and it’s smart to get tests done for heartworm and other issues. A puppy will have to visit the vet more frequently. If your dog seems ill or becomes injured, you must take it to a vet immediately.

Keep vet appointments for your dog. A good vet will be able to easily spot problems with your dog way before you actually see something. Annual physicals for dogs can spare owners a lot of unnecessary expenses down the road and the animal a lot of unnecessary suffering in the meantime.

TIP! It is not unusual for a dog to step on sharp objects that leaves it with cuts. If your dog experiences a cut, wash the area with antiseptic and put a bandage on it.

Take a long, hard look at your lifestyle to determine whether a dog is a good fit for you. You may want to get a dog, but there are lots of hard responsibilities that are involved in being a great dog owner.

Are you more confident about caring for your pet now? This info is what you need to ensure you have a great life with your pet. Use what you learned here to make sure your dog is happy and healthy.

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