How to take care of the health of my dog?
Living with a dog does not only mean feeding it and taking it for a walk. Taking care of your health is essential to maintain your quality of life. This doesn’t just mean taking him to the vet when he shows signs of illness. You also have to go to the periodic check-ups prescribed by the professional, deworm it regularly both internally and externally, vaccinate it or, depending on the characteristics of the dog, take it to the dog groomer.
The health of the dog begins with what it eats. Therefore, we must spend some time comparing different options, calmly read the ingredient lists and worry about knowing how the food we choose is made, if we decide to buy it. Our guide must be quality. Dogs need a diet based on animal protein from meat or fish. This can be complemented with a lower proportion of cereals, legumes, vegetables or fruits. The food must be adapted to the vital stage of the dog, we have to offer it in adequate quantities to prevent obesity problems and always give it at the same time.
As for what type of food to choose, it will depend on many factors. The best food is always homemade because we guarantee that the animal eats natural, fresh food with the perfect proportion of humidity. However, for this it is necessary to have certain knowledge in order to establish a balanced diet, so we recommend having veterinary advice. In case of choosing to feed the dog with feed, it is essential, as we say, to select a quality one.
The importance of deworming
Dogs can be affected by different parasites. There are external ones, such as fleas, ticks or mosquitoes, or internal ones, such as worms that can lodge in the digestive system, in the heart or in the lungs. That is why the veterinarian, depending on the characteristics of our dog, its place of residence and its way of life, will set the most appropriate deworming calendar for us to keep parasites away from it throughout the year.
It must be borne in mind that parasites are not only a nuisance for the dog, but they can transmit diseases as serious as babesia, filariasis or leishmania. In addition, many parasites can affect other animals in the house and even people. Hence the importance of deworming the dog from puppyhood and throughout his life.
Another important pillar to take care of the health of a dog is vaccination. Vaccines stimulate your immune system to build defenses that will protect you from highly contagious and life-threatening diseases, such as parvovirus or distemper. Vaccines are especially important if our dog is a puppy, but we must not forget that the vaccination must be repeated periodically to ensure that protection is maintained throughout its life.
All vaccines should not be administered every year of the dog’s life; however, the veterinarian will tell us which vaccines are essential for our dog and how often we should give them. In addition, in many places it is mandatory to administer the rabies vaccine once a year.
Basic dog hygiene
The cleaning of legs, eyes, ears and teeth or nail trimming should be done as regularly as our dog needs, according to its characteristics. The same goes for brushing and bathing. Maintaining proper hygiene and a coat in optimal condition will prevent the development of different pathologies, such as dermatitis. Just as frequent brushing is recommended, especially in the shedding season, with the bathroom you have to be careful, as an excess of washing or the use of inappropriate products could be counterproductive. In addition, it is essential that, if we bathe the dog at home, we make sure that we leave it completely dry, otherwise, the humidity could cause skin problems. For greater security, we can choose to go to a dog groomer. There they will also be able to guide us on the most suitable products and accessories for the hygiene of our dog.
Regular check-ups at the vet
Getting used to checking our dog regularly is a good habit that will allow us to detect the presence of external parasites or different pathologies, such as tumors, eye and ear infections or even anemia, if we notice that the mucous membranes are pale. But, in addition, it is convenient that, at least once a year, we take our dog for a check-up at the veterinary clinic, precisely for the early detection of pathologies or to confirm its good health. These reviews are especially important in dogs older than seven years, since aging is usually associated with the appearance of diseases such as cancer, osteoarthritis or kidney or heart failure. Detecting them as soon as possible helps a lot to maintain the quality of life of our dog.
Caring for and maintaining the health of a dog is also paying attention to its psychological well-being. Providing exercise, stimulation, education, company and affection are the foundations of a happy dog, hence we should not neglect these aspects, even if we have to request the help of canine behavior professionals.
The organization of the care of our dog
As we can see, there are multiple factors involved in caring for our dog’s health. Deworming, hairdressing, veterinary check-ups or even training add up too many elements to attend to, hence the usefulness of resorting to new technologies, such as mobile applications, which can help us organize the entire care schedule.