They are man’s best friend. They give us joy, never criticize us, and are always eager for a scratch behind the ears. Dogs can bring a lot of love to a household. No matter if you are married with kids or living alone and single, there is always a dog for you. But having a dog also comes with a degree of responsibility. These pets cannot really take care of themselves so they have to rely on you. This means that if you own a dog, you need to be a responsible dog owner.
Responsible Dog Ownership Tips
How can I be a responsible dog owner? A responsible dog owner should carefully oversee how their dog acts and behaves. It is also up to the owner to make sure the dog is well provided for. Being a responsible dog owner is not hard but can sometimes be time consuming. However, if you love your dog like your kids, it should be well worth it. Here are some responsible dog ownership tips.
Spay and Neuter Your Dog
The dog pounds are full of stray dogs whose chances of leaving the pound are very slim. The problem is uncontrolled overbreeding. This leads to unwanted puppies which leads to stray dogs. Unless you are a breeder, the responsible solution to this problem is to spay and neuter your dog. You will want to do this sometime after they turn 4 months old. Not only will it help keep down the dog population but it also helps to keep your dog from being so aggressive and territorial.
Leash Training Your Dog
Giving Your Dog Plenty of Exercise
A dog is not going to hop up on the treadmill for thirty minutes everyday. Just like people, some dogs like to lay around and only get up to eat. A responsible dog owner will exercise their dog by taking them for walks or runs. If you live in the city, keep him on the leash as you exercise. If you live out in the country, take him somewhere where he can run on his own. By exercising you keep the weight off of him which helps prevent diseases and other health problems in your dog.
Keep Identity Tags on Your Dog
If your dog gets lost, he cannot just walk up to someone and say “Hey, I am lost. I belong to the house on the left”. This is why you often see fliers posted around town for people looking for their lost dog. Do yourself a favor and put an ID tag on his collar. You should have the address of your home along with your phone number so people can call if they find him.
Spend Time with Your Dog
You should spend plenty of time with your dog. Play with them, throw the ball around, take them for a ride, or whatever. You want to create a bond with your dog. Dogs that spend a lot of time around their owners are always eager to bond and are much more comfortable around people. They will also trust you a lot more and will be more likely to obey when needed.
Make Regular Trips to the Vet
You want to make sure your dog is a healthy dog. This is one of the top indicators of a responsible dog owner. Dogs can be very prone to all sorts of nasty things like diseases, parasites, and other specific canine problems. You should schedule regular visits to your local veterinarian for check-ups and immunization shots.
Put Vaccine Tags on Your Dog’s Collar
Besides an ID tag, you should also include a vaccine tag on your dog’s collar. It is a very handy thing to include because if your dog should bite someone, you want proof that he has had all of his shots. A rabies vaccine tag is one of the most important because if you don’t have proof, you could be forced to give up your dog.
Clean Up After Your Dog
Dogs do not use toilets. They do not use toilet paper. They use the bathroom as nature intended. This means that you are responsible for the mess that your dog makes when in public. Most cities have an ordnance against dog poop in public. If your dog makes a mess and you leave it, you could be fined. Plus, you don’t want to leave it where someone could step on it. When taking your dog for a walk, you should always carry rubber gloves and a ziplock bag so you can dispose of the poop. If your dog spends a lot of time in the backyard, every day you should go out and clean up the mess. You don’t want him living in it.
Have a Secure Fence
You do not want your dog roaming the neighborhood, destroying property, and ending up in the city dog pound. If you are going to have a dog, the responsible thing to do is to have a secure fence and gate. The fence should be sturdy enough that he cannot knock it down and high enough that he cannot jump over it. If your dog is a digger, make sure to sink bricks, stones, or some sort of barrier a few inches into the ground beneath your fence. Your gate should have a secure latch on it that would be difficult for the dog to open. Some simple latches can be opened if the dog jumps up and hits them. Make sure there is a catch on the latch to prevent that.
Good Living Conditions for Dogs
Lastly, a responsible dog owner needs to make sure that their dog has good living conditions. If your dog spends time outside, make sure they have shelter. Clean water and healthy amounts of food are also necessary. If your water is dirty, it will encourage parasites. Fleas and ticks are always a problem no matter how clean the environment is. You can either dip your dog or use veterinary medicines that repel ticks and fleas. Most will take care of them for a month before you have to re-administer it. And what is most important is your dog needs to be treated in a loving and humane manner.