On the surface, it may seem easy to keep pets healthy. But, like most things in life, there’s usually more to how our pets are feeling than what meets the eye.
Animal Medical Hospital & 24 Hour Urgent Care cares about you and your pet, and we’re here to help. Our 10 tips will keep you keep your pets healthy and happy for the long haul!
10 PRO-TIPS TO KEEP PETS HEALTHY
- Know what’s normal – You know your pet better than anyone! Pay attention to subtle behavioral changes, as these are often one of the earliest ways to tell that there is something amiss. Drinking more water, a change in bathroom habits, hiding, or being more affectionate than usual can all signal the need for a veterinary visit.
- Practice pet safety – Collars and ID tags, a microchip, and keeping toxic chemicals and people food out of reach is a good start. By paying attention to the basics of pet safety, you can make sure your pet is protected.
- Feed a high quality and appropriate diet – Just as in people, a high quality diet can lead to years of health and wellness. Make sure your pet is eating a balanced and nutritious diet geared to her age, breed, and lifestyle. We recommend steering clear of fad diets, such as the ‘BEG’ diet, and boutique diets consisting of exotic ingredients, or those that are grain-free, as many are not well-researched or balanced. Talk to us about pet nutrition if you would like a recommendation. Try out the best multivitamin for dogs.
- Exercise your pet– We all know that exercise is important for a healthy life, but there is so much more out there than the usual walk around the block! Pick up a new sport, take an agility course, invest in some wall hanging cat perches, or just play ball in a new and fun way. The sky’s the limit to activities to exercise your pet!
- Keep up with wellness visits – An annual wellness exam provides us with the best opportunity to screen your pet for a variety of conditions and illnesses. This preventive exam allows us to spot warning signs of serious illness. Catching disease early means earlier treatment, better outcomes for your pet, and less of an expense for you. And if we don’t find anything, what a reason to celebrate!
- Parasite prevention – Heartworm disease, tick borne illness, and flea infestations can all be easily prevented with one dose of medication per month. These medications are safe, effective, and inexpensive compared with the cost of treatment for the conditions they prevent. Truly one of the easiest and best things pet owners can do to keep pets healthy!
- Pet tooth brushing – We hope we didn’t just lose you, because with a little persistence and patience, it’s relatively easy to make daily tooth brushing a part of your pet’s health routine. Poor dental health can actually shorten a pet’s lifespan, but it’s entirely preventable with tooth brushing and regular dental exams and cleaning.
- Social butterfly – Socialization is the process of preparing a dog or cat to enjoy and be comfortable with new places, people, and experiences. Ideally this starts in the “sensitive period” when a pet is between 3 and 9 weeks old, but adult pets can also be socialized. Studies show that well-socialized pets exhibit fewer concerning behaviors, and are less likely to be abandoned at shelters.
- All you need is love – Establishing a strong bond with your dog or cat is good for both of you. Petting, belly rubs, playing together, and brushing your pet are all great ways to keep pets healthy and happy, and strengthens the emotional connection between you.
- Good grooming – Daily grooming keeps your pet looking and feeling her best. Brushing, nail trims, and baths all keep your pet’s skin and coat healthy. Grooming also helps you keep an eye on changes in your pet’s skin and coat and check for lumps and bumps that may be a cause for concern. Talk to your veterinarian about the best grooming protocol for your individual pet.