When you’re at a pet store or at the pound you are probably thinking of how great the experience is going to be as soon as you get your dog. This may not be the reality when you take the pet home, however. That said, you have to train it to be what you want. Read on to learn what else you need to know:

It is expensive to own a dog. Not only do you have to buy food, but you have to pay their vet bills and purchase other items that they need. You could spend as much as a thousand dollars in one year on your pet! Health insurance for your pet can be a great idea to help you in emergency situations.

Make your home suitable for dogs. Before you bring a dog into your home, you should be sure that the area you’re bringing it to is safe. Do not have any pills out in the open and put all supplies in cabinets. Since some plants are very harmful because of their toxicity, it’s best to get rid of them or put them in an area that the dog cannot get to.

You need to have a physical every year, and so does 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. Taking your dog for a yearly checkup allows relatively minor problems to be detected before they turn into major issues.

TIP! Neuter or spay your dog. Studies show that these operations help your dog live longer and can reduce cancer risks.

Don’t take your dog off of your own property without a leash, no matter how well-behaved he is. A wild animal could draw his attention and make him run off into danger, or an unexpected provocation could result in some unpleasant situation with other people and their dogs. You will be responsible for your dog’s actions and safety.

Allow your lifestyle to dictate the type of dog you adopt or purchase. For instance, if you jog, a toy poodle may not be as great a choice as a dog that is able to run with you. If you spend more time in the home, a more sedate, indoor dog will fit your lifestyle best. You will be much happier when you make a choice that is complementary to your lifestyle.

Be sure your dog is physically active. Dogs require metal and physical exercise to ensure a happy puppy. Get out and do something with your dog. Go for a walk or play fetch. You will thus offer necessary exercise, but will also build strong bonds with the animal.

Avoid giving your pup table scraps. Doing so teaches it to beg and ruins its appetite for its regular food. Feeding table scraps to your dog could lead to digestive problems or obesity. Keep the dog away from your table when you eat to avoid any temptation on both parts.

TIP! If you are teaching your dog, do it at home. This prevents some of the problems that are associated with training around a lot of other people.

If you want a dog but don’t know if you can handle the responsibility, start out as a short-term foster home. There are many animals who need a temporary home until they are adopted. Fostering an animal will help animals and help you decide whether or not you would like to keep a dog of your own.

Become familiar with the medical peculiarities of the breed of dog you have chosen. Research the kind of dog you have and see if there are any preventative measures you can take. Ask your veterinarian what steps can be taken to prevent issues that are common with your dog’s breed.

If you are in the market for a pedigree pup, you just may find him at the pound. A lot of dog owners leave their dogs in the city pound when they can’t look after their dog anymore. Speak to the nearest pound to see if an option suits you. You can save the life of a dog this way.

You shouldn’t allow your pet off your property if it’s not wearing a leash, even if he is extremely well-behaved. He could easily get spooked by something and run off into harm’s way. Ultimately, you’re the one who’s responsible for your dog’s safety, as well as its actions.

TIP! When you are training your dog, it is always best to incorporate the use of hand signals in addition to using verbal commands. This is a very effective way to communicate with your dog.

Stay politically active for the sake of your dog. Keep up with local legislation to learn about new changes that might have an effect on your situation as a dog owner. Breed-specific laws are typically the result of media hype. You can be a great help by showing the local officials that responsible owners should have rights.

Have your pet checked out by your vet on a regular basis. You must keep up with vaccinations, heartworm testing and physical exams for your dog. Puppies need to go to the vet more often then adult dogs. Plus, you need to take immediate vet action if the dog shows any signs of injury or illness.

When you’re snacking, your dog may look at you with big, begging eyes, asking for a treat. While some foods are fine for sharing with your dog, there are some that must be avoided. Dogs are not able to tolerate grapes, chocolate and anything with caffeine, for instance. These food items can seriously harm your dog.

A daily brush does a lot more than just prevent shedding. Brushing every day can also help your dog to have a shiny and beautiful coat. When you brush a dog, you are moving the skin’s oils evenly throughout its fur, so it really makes the fur shine and feel great.

TIP! Your dog must learn to walk on a leash correctly. He should be on your side, not behind or ahead of you, and he should know how to respond when told to “heel.

When you start training, try different reward systems. Determine what motivates your dog to obey. Dogs will always respond to food as a treat, so see what types works best. You could also play tug of war for a few minutes to reward your dog. You may even find that your dog is best motivated by a little rubdown and affection.

If you or family members are away from home and can’t watch your new puppy, consider crate training. This will prevent your dog from roaming and breaking items in the house.

If you’re going to get a dog, you should have him trained. Owning a dog will be much easier if the animal is properly trained and obeys your commands. Regardless of the age of your dog, he can be trained.

If you are not sure whether dog ownership is a good idea for you, then you might want to try being a foster care provider for a needy dog. The shelters are full of homeless pups and lack many resources because of the overcrowding. Foster one of these dogs to help and see if you wish to care for one.

TIP! If your dog seems lonely or seems to have separation anxiety, leave the radio or a CD on when you leave the house. The noise from the music will comfort the dog and that can help the animal to feel secure.

Only a fool would ignore the advice above. Use it all, and soon you may see that your dog is responding in just the way you’ve always dreamed of. A dog that is happy will always love you, so be sure that you use this advice to your advantage!

We hope you enjoyed our article. If you have a puppy and need advice learning about his or her behavior, we would highly recommend that you have a look at the resource below which provides a lot of relevant information about dog training videos: