Caring for a pet can teach you many things about responsibility, love, and life in general.
If you’re bringing home your first rescue or foster dog, here are some things to keep in mind to make sure your pup is getting the proper care:
Although humans don’t have four legs or a hypersensitive nose, we have many things in common with animals. Like us, animals need their physical, mental, emotional, and social health to be recognized and fulfilled.
- Physical: Food and water are essential to a pet’s health. Be sure to find the food that’s right for your pet. Some brands contain ingredients that can actually be harmful to them. Dogs also need proper exercise to stay healthy and burn off excess energy. Play fetch, take them on walks, or challenge your pet to a game of tug of war.
- Mental/Emotional: Providing shelter is a basic physical necessity, but it is imperative for their mental and emotional development. Training your pets to follow basic commands will keep their mind sharp and in tune with you, and it will save you a lot of hair pulling and headaches. It can be frustrating to own an animal, especially in the beginning with house training, chewing, and getting acquainted to their new environment, but it’s important to stay patient. Pets want to be around their owners and need to feel reassured and loved. That said, of course, there will be occasions where you will have to be away from your four-legged buddy. For those occasions, find a trusted pet sitter. Many wonderful animal lovers can be found offering their dog walking or dog sitting services online or perhaps you have a friend or family member who’ll make a great stand-in pet parent when you have to be away.
- Social: There are many benefits to conditioning your pet to be around other people and other animals. It improves their ability to play nicely, and it will reduce the potential anxiety if you have to leave your pet with someone else.
Taking your pet to a professional care provider can help prevent issues that can arise. Getting them groomed regularly can cut down on pet toxins and keep them healthy. Another way to keep your pet healthy is to get them spayed or neutered. They are less likely to have behavioral issues, and they live longer. Plus, controlling animal reproduction is a bigger issue than we realize. There are already shelters full of animals needing a home.
Treat Them As A Member Of The Family
Having a pet is a mutually beneficial relationship. Most animals need companionship as much as humans. Be sure to do everything necessary to keep them around as long as possible. That means pet proofing your house by keeping harmful foods and substances out of their reach and investing in a microchip or a dog tag with your contact information in case they get lost or run away.
Thinking about your pet as another life and not just as an animal will keep things in perspective when it comes to their care. Some of the main reasons for owning a pet are the support, love, and camaraderie you provide for each other. Proper and responsible care will make your life easier, so why not make your pet’s time in your home as great as it can be?