Our job as dog owners is to ways to keep our dogs happy and healthy so they can live a long life.
Have you ever been in a situation where you feel you don’t know what’s best for your dog to be happy, healthy, and fulfilled so they can live the life they deserve?
We all have been there.
There is so much information and false assumptions about what a dog actually needs to be healthy and have a better life to live that you get overwhelmed by all of it.
But it’s not that difficult as it may seem. There are a few important things you need to be aware of in order for your dog to have a happy and healthy life so they can live with joy and without stress.
Here are 15 ways to keep your dog healthy and have a long life to live, be sure you’re doing the best for your dog.
1. Healthy and balanced dog diet
It’s more than just a food.
Proper food can keep your dog healthy and help him to live longer.
The saying “You Are What You Eat” couldn’t be more accurate, because everything that goes into the body becomes a part of the body.
So having the right type and amount of food can maintain your dog’s health for many years to go. It also helps to take care of your dog’s weight. Obesity-related illness is one of the common life-shortening problems.
Feed your dog with the best dog food and know what works for him. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different foods.
2. Exercise your dog every day to live a healthier life
Whether it’s walking, running, or playing fetch, be sure your dog gets the necessary exercise every day.
Besides the need to go potty throughout the day, dogs also need exercises that are suitable for their breed, size, and age.
Every dog has their own level of strength, but because of the breed differences, some may have more energy and athletic skills than others.
They need their exercise to get rid of the excess energy, relieve stress, and tone their strength.
If you are not sure that you are providing the necessary exercise for your dog you can use a dog health tracker like FitBark, which will record your dog’s daily activities and sleeping habits.
Here are full review on our experience with the FitBark.
3. Regularly do a check-up on your dog for him to have a healthy life
As simple as checking your dog’s fur and see if there is any change on the skin, around the paws, check the nails and paw pads, look into your dog’s ears and eyes, check your dog’s teeth, and be aware of the differences.
By regularly checking on your dog you can notice the changes much faster if there are any.
And in these check-ups you can notice if your dog’s food is good – skin and hair changes; are there any hot spots – the temperature of the skin locally gets warmer if there’s inflammation; and so on.
4. Regular visits to your veterinarian
You may know your dog pretty well, but checking in with a professional is the best thing you can do.
Yearly vaccinations and recommendations from veterinarians are important. Regular visits help to detect any changes in your dog and helps to protect your dog from serious health problems.
If your dog is old or he’s having some kind of health issues your vet visits will be more often than once per year.
Keep your dog healthy.
5. Deworming your dog has to become a routine for a healthier life
We all know that dogs eat a lot of crap that they find on the floor or during the walk outside.
That’s no surprise.
They don’t even have to eat anything to get the parasites. As they smell everything around them they can collect them with their noses, what is more, they clean their fur and paws and also, yes, their poop holes.
So there is no guarantee that they won’t get them in any other way.
No matter how hard you try to keep your dogs clean, the parasites will find them.
Parasites are the cause of various, serious diseases, so be sure to set the deworming as a serious part of your dog’s health care.
Check with your veterinarian for the best products to use on your dog.
6. Mental stimulation for your dog to have a healthy mind
Mental stimulation is just as important as physical exercise, but it is often forgotten.
Dogs have to train their brain in order to have a clear and calm mindset.
It affects dogs’ health in a similar way as physical exercise does. Thinking even tires your dog more than running around.
Also while playing or working with your dog you make a stronger bond between both of You.
7. Take care of your dog’s coat
One big part of your dog’s body is his coat. To have a healthy dog is to have a healthy dog coat.
If your dog has long hair this topic is more for you.
Weekly brushing your dog is a must.
Dog hear is like a shield to your dog, they protect their skin and work as a thermoregulator too.
A dog’s coat is composed of two layers: the topcoat of stiff guard hairs that help to repel water and shield them from dirt, and an undercoat of soft down hairs, to serve as insulation. Dogs with both undercoats and topcoats are said to have a double layer coat.
So to help that circulation you have to brush your dog’s coat to get rid of the old hair.
It also helps to observe if there are any parasites on the coat.
Here are some Home Grooming Tips for you.
8. Take care of your dog’s teeth – healthy dog teeth is a must
Teeth problems are common health deteriorates.
Tartar and gingivitis is a well-known problem and if not treated can lead to serious health problems.
Tartar is a huge nest of bacteria that will target a dog’s gums and in a long run, will create serious issues. It all starts with gum infection and from there it spreads further.
So keep an eye on your dog’s teeth, be sure he has plenty of toys to chew on or healthy dental treats. More about Dog Teeth Problems And How To Avoid Them here.
9. Keep the environment clean and harmless for a healthy life
As we all know, there are a lot of chemicals in our environment and cleaning products are not an exception.
Try to avoid products that are dangerous to you and your pets.
There are many healthy and environment-friendly products to use, so you don’t have to live with the harsh chemicals all the time. Chemicals develop cancer and affect the vestibular system.
As we all know, dogs have a great smell and they feel everything much more intense with their nose. Avoiding these things can massively improve your dog’s well-being.
10. Preventative treatments for the dog to be healthy
If you love to go in the woods with your dog or play in the grass in general, you might want to consider preventative treatments for ticks and flees.
These little external parasites transmit various diseases like Babezioze and Lime disease. Flees can irritate your dog and can develop an allergy that makes intense scratching and red skin, they can also cause tapeworm and anemia.
The best treatment is the preventative one. Secure your dog from these parasites before anything happens, because dealing with them is a lot harder than keeping them away.
These diseases are no joke and can be lethal to your dog.
So be a good dog owner and protect them.
11. Consider sterilizing your dog to have a longer life
This might sound weird, but hormones do have a tendency to develop various health problems, which depend on the sex of the animal.
Male dogs can have serious infections of the prostate, testicular cancer, and tumours, they can also develop aggressive behaviour.
Female dogs, on the other hand, are prone to pyometra, uterine infections, and mammary tumors.
Check out all the information on this topic, but know that this may help a lot in the long run.
12. Know the basic of First Aid for dogs – dog life in your hands
Knowing these things can save your dog’s life.
You can prevent injuries from happening, prevents further deterioration of health, decrease pain and agitation.
When you learn how to track your dog’s breathing and heart rate you can easily determine when there is a change.
Here you can learn the Basics of First Aid for dogs, so you know how to save a dog.
13. Keep up with the hot weather
When the weather is too hot be sure your dog has plenty of water and a shade where he can cool down.
Never leave your dog alone in the car, nor exposed to unbearable heat.
When overheating, depending on the dog’s individual characteristics, his blood vessels can either dilate (the tongue becomes pale) or narrow down (burgundy tongue). That means that he is not getting enough oxygen and nutrients to the needed organs and tissues.
Don’t let your dog overheat and be exposed to direct sunlight for a long time of period. Be safe.
Additionally, you can give your pet ice cubes to chew on and you can prepare various frozen treats. It is IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER that milk and ice cream should not be given to a dog!
14. Show your dog you love him so he can be healthy
Loving your doggo can be one thing, but can you show it to your dog?
This one is important because building a bond between you and your dog is a crucial thing. Not only rubbing his belly but being your dog’s advocate matters.
Play with your dog, train him, teach him new tricks and be the owner that he loves.
Here are some tips and tricks to show your dog you love him.
15. Socialization does matter
You would want to work on this when your dog is little, but socialization is very important.
It’s not only for their mental health but also for their wellbeing. If your dog is not used to people and/or dogs, he will be more stressed, anxious, aggressive, and so on.
Know your dog’s boundaries and work with them to get your dog in the best state of mind you possibly can.
Also, playing and interacting with other dogs make your dog’s life much more fun, and being a dog is what matters.