The thought of taking care of your dog's health doesn't have to be overwhelming. In addition to plenty of love and attention, these 6 tips from our Gaithersburg vets can help your dog live a long and healthy life.
Your Dog's Health
You love your dog, but caring for the health of your canine companion is a big responsibility, That said, caring for your pup's health doesn't need to be complicated, simply focus on lots of love and following these 6 easy steps to help prevent health issues from developing.
1 - Meet Your Dogs Nutritional Needs
Your dog's well-being is impacted by the quality of the food they eat. To help keep your dog healthy, speak to your vet about the best foods for your dog based on age, breed, and lifestyle. Your vet will be happy to offer tips for finding just the right food to meet your pup's nutritional needs. Whether you want to feed your pooch the best food to achieve optimal health, or to treat existing conditions through diet, discussing your dog's nutritional needs with your vet can help.
2 - Help Your Dog Maintain a Healthy Weight
Obesity has been linked to a number of serious conditions in dogs including diabetes and joint pain, so keeping your dog at a healthy weight is essential for optimal health. Once you have chosen a nutritious food that your dog enjoys, your vet will be able to determine the optimal number of calories your dog should consume each day. Once you know how many calories are appropriate for your dog, you will be able to easily work out exactly how much to feed your dog for each meal.
3 - Make Sure Your Dog Gets Plenty of Exercise
Different breeds require different amounts of exercise. While some dogs can stay healthy with a quick walk around the block, high-energy breeds may need an hour or more of vigorous exercise once or twice a day. Adequate physical activity not only helps to keep your dog's body in good condition, but it can also help to prevent them from getting bored which can lead to destructive behaviors or anxiety. Be sure to ask your vet or breeder about the appropriate amount of exercise for your dog. Walks, backyard games, and social time at dog parks are all great ways to ensure your pooch gets plenty of exercise.
4 - Take Your Dog For Yearly Wellness Exams
Diagnosing and treating conditions in the very earliest stages helps to ensure the very best treatment outcomes. Annual veterinary exams, when your dog seems healthy, are all about prevention, monitoring your pet's overall health, and checking for early signs of developing issues. Your vet will discuss your dog's diet, exercise and other lifestyle factors with you, ask if you have questions or concerns about your pet's health or behavior, then perform a thorough physical examination. After the examination your veterinarian will discuss any findings with you. If anything concerning has been detected, your vet will make recommendations about your pet's diet, any necessary diagnostic testing, or treatment.
5 - Keep Your Dog's Vaccinations Up-To-Date
Our Gaithersburg vets believe that vaccinations are essential for helping your pet live a long and healthy life. Regularly scheduled vaccines help to protect your dog from many highly contagious, potentially life-threatening diseases. Most states require by law that all pets be vaccinated against rabies, but there are a number of other serious conditions that vaccines protect dogs against including parvo, distemper, and panleukopenia.
6 - Parasite Prevention Is Key!
Ticks, fleas, and mosquitoes can all carry organisms that lead to a range of diseases that seriously threaten your dog's health and longevity. A bite from one of these parasites could cause your dog to become gravely ill if not protected. Speak to your vet about the most effective ways to protect your pooch against a full range of tick-borne diseases, heartworms, and other parasitic conditions common in your area.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.