Tips For Being a Responsible Dog Owner

by Jennifer Smith September 04, 2018

Being a responsible dog owner means more than just setting out fresh water and handfuls of dog food. It requires commitment, patience, love and care for dogs. These pets are more than just animals; they become members of the family and are often considered our "babies." To celebrate Responsible Dog Ownership Month, dog owners are encouraged to take these steps for their dogs:

  1. I.D. dogs: After adoption, register/chip dogs in case they get lost. This will help neighborhood residents locate your dog easily and help match the dog with you. 
  2. Take the dog to the vet: Regular check-ups should occur at least every six months. The dog will need to visit the vet more often as he/she ages. 
  3. Healthy dog food matters: Dogs that over-eat risk cardiovascular health issues as well as trouble breathing and arthritis. Make sure you talk to a vet to see if you are feeding your dog the right food and the right amount. 
  4. Speaking of animal health, fencing in dogs allows for convenient playtime outdoors. Not only will pets play with other animals, but they can bond with pet owners, too. 
  5. Train dogs new tricks. Yes, you can do it from the backyard. Incorporate strength training exercises for dogs that will help them develop strong bones and joints. 

More tips for owning dogs

  • Although age and breed may vary, active breeds need a minimum of 30 minutes of daily outdoor playtime. If dog owners own hunting dogs, herding dogs or working dogs, they will need the most exercise, around two hours! As your dog moves from being a puppy to an older dog, he/she will need at least one hour of movement.
  • If you live in a state that has extremely hot or cold temperatures, keep outdoor play to a minimum. During hot months, make sure your dog has plenty of water and shade. During colder months, find ways to play with your dog indoors. Both snow and hot pavement will impact how the dog feels and can damage dog foot pads. 
  • Give your pup plenty of toys that they can take outside. Go ahead; spoil them!
  • Stay active with your dog. Run around the backyard with them; throw a ball or Frisbee; or simply take a walk with them by your side. Interaction creates a growing bond between pet owner and pet.
  • Adopt a second dog from an animal shelter or rescue center; so, the dogs can play together.
  • Adopt an older dog - senior dogs have plenty of years left to live and love.

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Jennifer Smith
Jennifer Smith