Odds are you love your dog and treat it just like a member of the family. As a good owner, you never leave your dog chained in the yard or home alone without access to fresh food and water.

Most likely you do all you can to ensure your dog is not simply cared for but happy and enjoying life. But there may be a few things you don’t realize are necessary to help ensure your dog’s good health. Consider the four tips below.

1. Just one mosquito

When spring arrives, any dog that ventures outside for even a short period of time is at risk for contracting heartworm. A single bite from a mosquito that’s carrying heartworm larvae will infect your dog.

The worms take up residence in your dog’s heart and other organs, and can ultimately cause organ failure and death. Often there are no immediate symptoms, so it’s essential that you have your dog tested for heartworm and placed on a monthly preventive medication

Prevention costs are far less than treatments necessary to try to save your dog after he or she gets infected. Visit the Humane Society‎ to learn more.

2. Diet requires healthy fats

Most dog owners are cautioned against feeding their dog any foods designed for cats, due to the high fat content in those products. But this doesn’t mean your dog shouldn’t have healthy fats in his or her diet.

According to Homes Alive Pet Centre, healthy sources of fat are important in your dog’s diet to help promote good heart health and contribute to healthy skin and coat. Food items such as raw broccoli and cauliflower are just two of the many great sources of healthy fats for your dog.

3. Non-core vaccinations

Your dog will receive certain vaccinations as a puppy, and others will be scheduled annually. However, there are some non-core vaccinations that aren’t automatically given to most dogs.

One you should specifically talk to your vet about is the leptospirosis vaccine. Your dog can become infected simply by sniffing the urine of a carrier animal, such as a raccoon or skunk. If infected, your dog may suffer liver or kidney failure and potential death. Click this page about leptospirosis for more information.

4. Leave your dog at home

Many dog owners are so attached to their pets that they want to take them everywhere. This practice has been responsible for the death of many dogs every year.

What might seem like a quick trip to the store on a nice 78-degree day with your dog can be a death sentence for the animal.

Never leave your dog locked in your car. On a 78-degree day, temperatures inside a car can reach up to 120 degrees in a matter of a handful of minutes. Read more at the PETA website.

These are solid tips for helping your dog to live a happy and healthy life. You should always feel free to call your veterinarian if you have any questions or concerns.

Be assured you are doing all you can for your dog, and you and your pet should have many happy years together.


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