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Your pet is a part of your family, which is why you will want to do everything you can to keep them healthy and well. Raising a pet can be a little confusing because they do share some of the same basic needs as humans, but they also have unique wellness requirements. When you take the time to learn about the unique needs of your pet, you can help them stay healthier and happier. This guide can help you learn more about caring for your pet.
Start With a Healthy Diet
Nutrition is especially important to the health and wellness of pets because their digestive systems are different. It’s common knowledge that chocolate is toxic to dogs, but there are plenty of natural foods that your dog or cat should never be given. Even as an occasional treat, foods with pits or seeds should be avoided. You should also check with your vet about the specific nutritional needs of your pet. You can check the nutrition panel on the packages of dog and cat food to look for serving sizes and specific nutrients. Additionally, spread servings out throughout the day to keep from overfeeding your pet. You should also ensure they have access to clean drinking water on a consistent basis.
Make Sure Your Pet Gets Enough Activity
Your pet needs plenty of physical activity, so it’s important to plan exercise for your dog or cat. For dogs, taking a walk, jog, or bicycle ride can help you both get the exercise you need. If you don’t feel like exercising, take your dog to a dog park where they can run and play with other dogs. Cats can get enough exercise at home when you use toys to give them a focal point for their attention. Play with a fake mouse on a string or use a ball of yarn to give your cat something to chase. Look for new toys or activities to keep your pets motivated and active.
Schedule Annual Health Screenings
Each year, your pet will need to see their vet to get their annual vaccinations. This is also a good time for a yearly wellness checkup, so be sure to mention any behavioral or physical health issues that have concerned you. It’s also important to know that dogs and cats are susceptible to some of the same medical conditions that affect humans, including heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Treatments for these conditions can be just as costly as they are for people, so you should prepare for bigger veterinary care bills as your pet gets older. You can offset these costs by looking for an affordable pet insurance policy, but you should still set aside savings for your pet’s future care. This can be incredibly helpful if your pet ever has an issue and needs medical attention right away.
Don’t Forget to Groom Your Pet
You should discuss your pet’s grooming needs with your vet since these care requirements vary based upon the breed of cat or dog you own. In general, you should get your pet acclimated to having their nails trimmed on a regular basis. This practice can cause a pet to feel anxiety or fear, causing them to lash out, so get them used to nail trimming at an early age. You should also be bathing your cat or dog every three weeks or so. Some breeds may need more frequent bathing, while other breeds may suffer from fur loss and dry skin from too many baths. As you bathe your pet, check for lumps under the skin to catch tumors in the earlier stages of growth.
If a health emergency does arise with your pet, don’t delay in getting them to your vet. Just as is the case with people, earlier medical treatment can improve the chances for a full recovery from most conditions. You should also ask your vet about any questions you may have about your pet’s health or wellness. Frequent communication with your vet will help you ensure your pet will stay well and live a long and happy life.