A healthy dog is a happy one and if you are a pet parent, their happiness is top on your list. Health is essential at all stages. But as a dog ages, it becomes even more important. There are simple everyday actions you can take to ensure your dog stays healthy as he grows older.
Regular visits to the vet are essential. A specialist in animal health care can detect issues that an untrained eye cannot. Just like people, dogs need to see doctors regularly for routine checkups and procedures. There are also care and maintenance tips unique to each dog that a vet can provide based on analysis. Keep up with vet visits to ensure your dog stays healthy.
Dental hygiene helps keep your dog healthy for several reasons. Dogs use their teeth for eating and for play. Both are essential to life in various ways. When the teeth are not healthy, a dog cannot chew his food properly, which can lead to poor digestion and other health issues. Dental diseases can also infect other areas of the body. Dogs with poor dental health also may not be able to defend themselves properly, due to weak teeth.
Your dog needs exercise every day. Take your dog outside to play. This could be a walk to the park, around the neighborhood, playing a game of discus or fetch in the backyard, or even a physical therapy regimen, if he needs it. Staying active helps your dog live a longer and happier life. Exercise keeps him in shape, as well as helps keep him from getting pent up energy and frustration. If your dog is lying around too much, that can do unseen damage.
Keep a proper and consistent diet for your pet. Talk to your vet to find out which foods are appropriate for your dog and stick to that diet consistently. It's important that your dog get essential nutrition every day. Any treats should also be counted in this plan to ensure your dog does not get too much or too little of the recommended vitamins and nutrients. Overfeeding and underfeeding can both cause serious damage or even death. As your dog ages, to keep him healthy, be sure to reevaluate his nutritional needs as often as recommended by the vet.
Mental well-being is just as important as the physical. Giving your dog a large dose of love and care is good for his mental state. It's also a big part of being a pet parent. Show your dog you love him by playing with him, holding him, talking to him, and being attentive to his wants and needs. Also make he sure he gets plenty of sunlight and is regularly exposed to other people and animals. Remember that depression can lead to other health issues, so it is important to keep your dog's overall mentality in mind when considering his health.
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
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