Looking after your dog's health doesn't need to be overwhelming. Along with plenty of love and attention, these tips from our Springfield vets can help you to give your dog everything they need to live a long and healthy life.
Your Dog's Health
Caring for the health of your dog is a big responsibility, even though you love your canine companion. That said, caring for your pup's health doesn't need to be complicated; simply focus on lots of love and read these guidelines for ideas on keeping your dog happy and healthy.
1. Meet Your Dog's Nutritional Needs
Your dog's well-being will largely depend on the quality of the food they eat. To help keep your dog healthy, speak to your vet about the best foods for your dog based on age, breed, and lifestyle. Your vet will be happy to offer tips for finding just the right food to meet your pup's nutritional needs. Whether you want to feed your pooch the best food to achieve optimal health, speaking with your primary veterinarian is the best way to get started.
2. Help Your Dog Maintain a Healthy Weight
Obesity has been linked to a number of serious conditions in dogs including diabetes and joint pain, so keeping your dog at a healthy weight is essential for optimal health. Once you have selected a nutritious food for your pet, your vet will be able to calculate the optimal number of calories your dog should consume each day. Once you know how many calories are appropriate for your dog, you can work out exactly how much you should be feeding your dog each meal.
3. Ensure Your Dog Is Getting Enough Exercise
Different breeds have different physical exercise requirements. While some dogs can maintain adequate health with a quick walk around the block, high-energy breeds may need an hour or more of vigorous exercise once or twice a day. Sufficient physical activity not only helps to keep your dog's body in good condition, but it can also help to prevent mental boredom which can lead to destructive behaviors or anxiety. Be sure to ask your vet or breeder about the appropriate amount and types of exercise for your dog. Walks, backyard games, and social time at dog parks are all great ways to ensure your pooch gets plenty of exercise.
4. Take Your Dog for Annual Wellness Exams
Diagnosing and treating conditions in the very earliest stages helps to ensure the very best treatment outcomes. Annual veterinary exams, when your dog seems healthy, are all about prevention, monitoring your pet's overall health, and checking for early signs of developing issues. Your vet will discuss your dog's diet, exercise and other lifestyle factors with you, address any questions or concerns you might have about your pet's health or behavior, then perform a comprehensive physical examination. Upon completing the exam, your veterinarian will discuss any findings with you. If anything concerning has been detected, your vet will make recommendations concerning diet, diagnostic testing, or treatment.
5. Make Sure Your Dog's Vaccinations Are Up-To-Date
Our Springfield vets are believers in the necessity of routine vaccinations for your pet's health and longevity. Regularly scheduled vaccines help to protect your dog from many highly contagious, potentially life-threatening diseases. Most states require by law that all pets be vaccinated against rabies, but there are a number of other serious conditions that vaccines protect dogs against including parvo, distemper, and panleukopenia.
6. Don't Forget Parasite Prevention!
Ticks, fleas, and mosquitoes can all harbor organisms that lead to a range of preventable diseases that can threaten the health and longevity of your dog. A bite from one of these parasites could gravely sicken your dog if they aren't protected. Speak to your vet about the most effective ways to protect your pooch against a full range of tick-borne diseases, heartworms, and other parasitic conditions common in your area.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.