Dogs really are a man’s best friend. They make us laugh, keep us company, and just make life better. Everyone should own a dog. In fact, some people argue that everyone should own a couple of dogs.
Taking care of a dog isn’t always easy, but it’s definitely worth it. Dogs are a lot of work, but they give back a whole lot of love. Providing proper care will make a dog happier and help the two of you bond. That means knowing the do’s and don’ts of pet ownership.
Dog lovers know many of the right things to do with their pets like give them love, food, and shelter. However, there are some things you don’t want to do with your dogs. Here are a few things you should avoid if you own a dog.
1) Leave Them in a Hot Car
Dogs can overheat really fast. If it’s hot outside, it’s even hotter in a car. People have a habit of thinking it’s okay to leave their pets in a car while they run into the store but it’s not. They could die.
2) Feed Them Too Much
Sure, your dog looks cute when begging for food, but overfeeding can be bad for his health. Dogs don’t always know when they have had enough. Follow a good feeding schedule so they get plenty of food but not too much.
3) Forget About Their Teeth
You don’t forget to take care of your teeth so don’t neglect your dog’s teeth either. While there are products you can use at home to protect your pet’s teeth, you should also take your dog to the vet for dental checkups. They need their teeth to eat.
4) Hit Them
Sometimes, it can be frustrating to deal with a dog but it’s not okay to hit them. Because dogs don’t understand physical abuse, it will only make it harder to train them. Instead of hitting your dog, use other forms of discipline.
5) Use a Crate as Punishment
Dogs shouldn’t be sent to their crates as punishment. Their crates should be a place they enjoy. When they are sent there as a type of discipline, it confuses them and makes training harder.
6) Leave Them Chained
Dogs can be tied out for short periods but it’s not a good idea to do it very long. Being chained can make dogs anxious and depressed. They need to be able to run and play.
7) Avoid the Vet
Yes, vets are expensive but they can save your pet’s health and even life. Dogs should see their vet regularly for checkups. If your dog is sick, don’t try to diagnose him at home. Let the professionals handle it.
8) Pet from Above
You may be used to petting your dog on top of the head but they really don’t like it. Because they can’t see your hand, it could scare them. Instead, pet them from an angle where they can see what you’re doing.
9) Be So Lenient
It’s hard to make your pup be good when he’s so cute but you can’t let dogs run wild all the time. Dogs crave structure. If you want them a well-behaved pet, you have to set some rules. Your dog won’t be mad.
10) Stare at Them
You might love looking at your dog but don’t stare him in the eyes. Dogs can take this as a challenge or as aggression. It’s okay to watch them, but don’t stare.
11) Take Them on The Same Boring Walks
You might have a morning or evening routine walking your dog but he needs you to mix things up. Dogs love to explore and learn new things. Try taking different routes and going new places to make walks a little more exciting for your pup.
12) Confuse Them with Affection
Your dog needs to learn right from wrong but he can’t do that if you give him affection while he is in trouble. If your dog has done something wrong, don’t snuggle or hug him, even if he gives you a pitiful look. Be firm so your dog can learn the rules and get in trouble less often.
13) Allow Them to Pull You
When you walk your dog, you should lead, not the other way around. Never let your dog pull you. Make sure you show the dog who is in charge so that the walks get much easier for both of you.
14) Forget to Spay or Neuter
Besides helping to cut down on overpopulation, spaying and neutering a pet can make them calmer and even healthier. Talk to your vet about the best time to spay or neuter your dog. They may not like it at first but it will make a big difference for them in the long run.
15) Use the Wrong Collar
Your dog has to wear his collar all day. Make sure you choose one that is comfortable. Don’t make it too big or too tight. Choker collars are never a good idea since they can cause anxiety in some dogs.
16) Feed Them Table Scraps
Sure, your dog asks for table scraps, but don’t give in. Dogs aren’t supposed to eat human food since it can be bad for them. Even if you don’t see any problems now, this habit can lead to severe health problems later on. Stick to quality dog food.
17) Walk on Hot Concrete
Hot concrete can hurt a dog’s paws. Many people don’t even stop to think that roads and sidewalks may be too hot for a dog. When walking your pet on hot days, avoid harmful surfaces.
18) Let Kids Jump on Them
Children and dogs might get along but you should never let kids jump on or aggravate them. Even the gentlest dog has a breaking point. Nobody wants to see a child get bitten. Teach your kids how to respect animals so they play nicely with them.
19) Forget to Give Them Water
While watering your dog might seem obvious, remember, they a lot of water, especially on hot days. Without adequate water, they could become dehydrated or have a heat stroke. Make sure your dog always has plenty of fresh water.
20) Shave Them in the Summer
If you have a dog with a lot of hair, your first instinct may be to shave him in the summer. However, this can actually cause more harm than good. A dog’s fur protects it’s skin from the sun. Shaving it could lead to a sunburn.
21) Exercise Too Much
Dogs like to play and need plenty of exercise but there is such a thing as too much. Dogs can become overheated and need to rest. Let your dog play and have fun, but don’t overdo it.
22) Forget to Groom Them
You never want to forget to groom your dogs. Even those with short hair may need a trim now and then. It’s also good to bathe them regularly.
23) Forget Their Flea Treatment
Fleas can cause all kinds of problems for dogs. Don’t let these pests torture your dog by skipping their treatment. Your furry friend will thank you.
24) Put the Dog in a Truck Bed
You might think that the truck bed is a good place for your dog to ride but you’re wrong. The dog could jump out, get thrown out of the truck, or get hurt by all the movement. Put your dog in the cab with you or in a crate or carrier, or tethered in with a leash.
25) Forget to Trim Their Nails
Dogs need to have their nails trimmed regularly. When outside, they wear nails down on hard surfaces but when inside, dogs need to have their nails clipped. This helps dogs walk better and prevents them from scratching themselves.
26) Wear a Muzzle
Putting a muzzle on a dog isn’t something that should be done often. If your dog is aggressive, it may be necessary, but it shouldn’t be done to keep him quiet. Muzzles can be painful and stressful for dogs.
27) Let Them Run Loose in the Neighborhood
You shouldn’t let your dog have free roam of the neighborhood. A fenced yard is best. Dogs can get lost, stolen, or hurt when allowed to run loose.
28) Assume They Are Like Cats
You might think your dog is okay with cats but don’t leave the two alone together. The dog could attack the cat, or the cat may be the one who hurts the dog. At least until you know the two will get along, keep a close eye on the animals.
29) Forget to Check Them for Ticks
While outside dogs have the greatest risk of getting ticks, indoor dogs can too. Check your pet often, removing any ticks found. Remember, ticks are not just uncomfortable but they can also make your dog sick.
30) Yell at Them
If you get mad at your dog, try not to yell. Dogs get scared and confused when they hear a person yelling at them, and some tend to shut down. You will get better results if you are firm but calm.
31) Let Them Eat Their Toys
While some dogs like to chew up their toys, don’t let them. If your pet swallows plastic or rubber, it can cause blockages in the digestive tract. Instead, give your pup a safe and healthy chew treat.
32) Forget to Vaccinate Them
One of the worst things you can do is forget to vaccinate your dog. If not vaccinated, dogs can easily get sick from contracting deadly diseases. You can find low-cost vets if money is an issue.
33) Forget to Put Sunscreen on Them
You put sunscreen on yourself so don’t forget your pet. The sun’s rays can be just as dangerous for dogs as they are for humans. You can find a sunscreen that is safe to use on dogs at most pet stores.
34) Leave Them Out in the Cold
If it’s too cold for humans to be out, it’s too cold for pets. Sure, they can go out to potty but they shouldn’t be left outside for any length of time. They deserve to be warm too.
35) Ignore Them
Dogs thrive on attention and hate being ignored. When busy, you probably noticed that your dog gets a little anxious. Dogs love to spend time with their humans. Make sure you are making plenty of time for your pet.