Bringing a dog into the home is a decision that should not be taken lightly. If you are considering, or have already extended your family to include a dog, there are things that you should know. Below, you will find a list of quality tips to use to help the transition easier for you and your dog.
When giving your dog a bath, make sure that you only put on shampoo that is intended for canines. Using lukewarm water, get the entire body wet and then begin applying the shampoo to their face, working your way down their body. Wait a few minutes and then take a washcloth and wipe off the suds from your pet’s face. Wash off the rest of the shampoo as well.
Having fresh and clean water available to your dog at all times is a must. Dogs become dangerously dehydrated in a matter of days, so its very important to always have water ready. Dogs will also appreciate water that is clean. If you find it necessary to drink filtered or bottled water because of the quality of water from your tap, then be sure to provide your dog with the same high quality water.
Research a particular breed of dog you may be interested in before bringing him home. Lots of people make the mistake of falling in love with a type of dog, then find out later that the animal isn’t really for them. Chihuahuas, for example, are a trendy type, but very difficult to fully potty train, especially in colder climates!
Be careful if you’re searching for a new dog on Craigslist or other classified ads. Many people exaggerate the truth in order to unload problems or challenging training issues and you could end up with an impossible situation on your hands. Only talk to people who are verifiable through vet records and demonstrate positive handling experience.
Take the time to correct bad behavior in your dog at the first sign of it. When you ignore this behavior, your dog thinks that it is okay. It is possible that your dog could injure a person, and that person could be you! So correct unwanted behavior right away.
Your dog needs to exercise regularly. Like humans, dogs must exercise to burn calories, remain healthy, and help their minds stay sharp. Exercising also helps them avoid boredom that can cause destructive behaviors. Keeping your dog active can curb chewing, biting, digging, and chasing urges. It can even help them avoid depression.
Put your dog through obedience training. A well-trained dog is a joy to live with for both you and them. Teaching them simple commands like “Come,” “Heel,” “Sit,” and “Stay” can help curb or prevent troublesome behaviors in no time. You can either teach them yourself, or you can find out about obedience courses by contacting the SPCA or the local humane society for class recommendations.
Time, energy and knowledge will make the living arrangement with a dog more enjoyable for everyone. Use what you have just learned to help the household adapt to the addition. Dogs can be great friends and companions if you take the time to train, love and care for them properly.