Do you feel like your grocery store is lacking in the dog food department? Many people think that they could be taking better care of their furry friends if they knew how. A lot of dog owners wind up handling things on their own. Follow the tips presented here to learn how to provide your dog with the kind of responsible care needed for a long and happy canine life.

Go on and hug your dog, but do not kiss him. Kissing a dog might seem cute, but they have dirty mouths. Dogs tend to dig through garbage cans, drink out of toilets and explore the hind quarters of other animals. It’s a folk tale that dogs have cleaner mouths than humans. It certainly isn’t the truth.

Have your dog spayed or neutered. Research has shown this simple procedure can lessen cancer risks and can give your dog a longer lifespan. Furthermore, altered dogs do not have the tendency to wander off, so they will stay safer.

Make your home dog-proof. Before you bring a new dog home, make sure the whole area is safe. Cleaning supplies and medications should be locked away, and any indoor trash cans need to be put in a cabinet. Many common household plants are poisonous, so keep them away from your dog or get rid of them.

TIP! Make your home suitable for dogs. Take the time to tour your home with an eye for safety before you introduce your dog to your home.

Since your dog cannot talk to you, you have to learn how to listen to your dog’s non-verbal language. If your pet hesitates when approaching a person or a pet, don’t push them to go near them. This may cause another dog or person to get bit. So pay attention to your dog’s demeanor and make your judgement from these cues.

When vacationing with your dog, use the camera on your phone to snap a quick picture. This allows you to have a photo of him if he gets lost.

It doesn’t matter how good your dog is, you should never leave your property without keeping him or her leashed. Wild animals could get the dog’s attention and lead him into dangerous places, or unanticipated circumstances could provoke conflicts with others. Your dog’s safety and behavior are your responsibility.

It is a good idea to use hand signals when you are trying to train your dog, instead of just relying on verbal commands. Using hand gestures can help your dog to recognize commands quicker. Experiment with each way and determine what works.

TIP! Hand signals are great when they are paired with verbal commands. Using hand gestures can help your dog to recognize commands quicker.

To improve the dog training process, try using hand signals in addition to verbal commands. Signals like these help your dog learn things quickly. Give both methods a try to find out which works best for your particular pup.

Avoid buying your dog bargain-based food. The cheaper brands actually contain a lot of preservatives, additives and other ingredients that can compromise your dog’s health. Instead, research which brands are considered to be nutritious. Your dog will be much healthier if you feed it some healthy food.

If your dog has to stay outside during cold weather, give him a dog house. Wet feet and cold fur can bring on health problems. Protect them from precipitation and wind by providing them a dry and spacious shelter.

The dog breed you choose should blend in well with your lifestyle. For example, if you live an active lifestyle it is probably best for you to find an active dog instead of a little dog. However, if you’re someone who stays mainly at home then seek out a small dog that loves to be adorned with lots of love while lounging around the house. You should find a dog that fits well with your personality.

TIP! Think about your own lifestyle when considering the dog breed you want. For instance, if you love to run, get a dog that loves to run too, and leave the miniature breed for someone who is less active.

Trim your dog’s nails on a regular basis. Once the nails start to curl under, they can cause your dog a great deal of pain. Try trimming them with scissors you buy at the store. It is best to take your dog to the groomer if you do not want to do it yourself.

Keep trimming the soft hair near the paws of your dog to keep it from matting. Straighten hair with a comb a bit before you trim it. If you lack the confidence to attempt this, take the dog to a professional groomer.

Get into pet politics! Look for changes in the local laws that govern pet ownership in your area. Sometimes, a small number of bad dogs get more publicity than a large number of good dogs. Talk to responsible pet owners all around you by contacting your local officials.

Talk to your vet about your dog’s food portions. Many people look at the guidelines on the dog food bag; the problem with this is that some of the recommendations may be inaccurate and could cause your dog to gain weight. Speak to the vet about what makes sense for your dog.

TIP! Speak with your vet about how much food should your dog be eating each day. Though some folks feed whatever the package recommends, those guidelines are not always appropriate and can lead to overfeeding.

Remember the saying “The more people that work on something, the less likely they are to succeed” while you train your dog. Training methods vary by person, and multiple trainers can confuse the dog. One person should be the trainer, and everyone else can act to reinforce good behaviors.

You may think it’s okay to share your own snacks with your dog. It might be alright to give your dog some foods, but not all foods are good for dogs. Do not give dogs any chocolate or caffeine, as these foods are detrimental to their health. Such foods tend to harm the health of dogs.

Your dog can eat much better if you make his food for him. There are a number of choices aside from what’s stocked on store shelves. Keep this information in mind for ideas to improve your relationship with your own dog.

A dog that spends a lot of time outside should have a warm and safe shelter in case it is needed. Remember that dogs exposed to cold and damp or excessive heat are far more likely to become ill. Keep your dog safe from the elements by providing him the dry shelter he needs.

TIP! If your dog spends time outside, he should have a good house. You can purchase one or build one yourself if you are handy.

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