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Dog Care Tips for a Pawesome 2021

The new year is here and it feels a lot like a blank canvas! Now is the time to figure out what’s working for you and your pets and what’s not. You must plan ahead to ensure that both you and your dog enjoy a mutually successful new year. Read on for 3 essential dog care tips to help you do just that.

Dog Health

Posted by bravectosouthafrica - 14 December 2020

Make the New Year the Best Year Yet With Your Pet

It is only natural that with a new year comes a new list of resolutions: a few things that you’d like to do less of and a few things that you’d like to do more of. As a responsible pet parent, you’ll want to take your beloved furry friend’s needs into consideration as well. This will help to ensure that both of you have a rewarding new year together. When making positive changes in your own life, your canine companion will likely reap the benefits too.

If you are left wondering how to make meaningful changes that’ll positively impact yourself and your dog, Bravecto® and We Are Family have identified 3 dog care goals to follow in 2021 that should help both of you enjoy one pawesome new year together.

A woman and her dog out for a walk on the beach

Care Tip 1: Strive for a Healthier Lifestyle

Kickstart your new year by committing to a healthier lifestyle for yourself and your pooch. Healthy lifestyle choices for both of you include making better food choices, staying hydrated, getting enough exercise and proper care.

Eat More Healthy Foods to Enjoy a Better Quality of Life

It may be difficult in the beginning but you’ll soon come to realise how much better you feel once you’ve decided to prioritise eating healthier foods and leaving unhealthy foods in the past. Starting to feed your dog a healthier diet should help you see positive changes in your canine companion as well. Choose to feed your pooch a top-quality brand of commercial dog food.

If you opt to feed your dog raw foods, you should speak to your vet about an appropriate raw food diet. Stop feeding your dog table scraps and cut back on the number of treats you usually give them. A treat should be just that – an occasional treat – not something your dog indulges in every day. In fact, treats should only make up an extremely small portion of your pup’s daily food intake or none at all.

When you do feed your dog the occasional treat, the treat needs to be an actual dog treat – not a human treat. You may be surprised to learn that your dog is getting as many (or even more) calories from one small cookie as can be found in a whole meal.

Drink More Water for Improved Health

Humans and dogs alike benefit from consuming enough fresh, clean drinking water. It’s an essential key to enjoying better health.

Be sure to always keep your dog’s water bowl filled with fresh water and clean the bowl on a regular basis. Are you and your pup planning on spending some time outdoors? Remember to bring along some water (and a bowl) to avoid doggy dehydration. If you don’t have a lot of space, you can even make your own easy DIY water bowl from a recycled dog food bag.

If your dog starts drinking much more water than usual, be sure to make an appointment with your vet ASAP. A dog that suddenly displays a change in their usual drinking habits may be a sign of a change in their health. Therefore, it’s important to get to the root of the cause sooner rather than later, to avoid lasting damage.

Proper Care Means Seeking Out Professional Help

Both you and your dog will benefit from a yearly physical exam from your respective healthcare professionals. An annual visit to your veterinarian will go a long way in providing the best care possible for your dog. Your veterinarian is a skilled professional with lots of experience in accurately assessing your dog’s behavioural and physical health. If you have any concerns at all about changes in your dog’s activity, drinking, eating or sleeping habits, bring them to the vet’s attention during your visit to ensure any issues are dealt with early on.

To care for your dog’s health and wellbeing extends to meeting their grooming needs as well. Make sure your dog is bathed, brushed, have their nails clipped and teeth cleaned by yourself or a professional groomer on a regular basis.

Not only does grooming benefit your dog’s health and overall condition but it also helps you to identify subtle changes to their eyes, ears, footpads, skin and teeth. The grooming process also helps to strengthen your mutual bond. Should you notice any changes or abnormalities while grooming your loyal pal, consult with your veterinarian immediately.

A dog waiting to eat from a dog bowl filled with quality food

Care Tip 2: Go Outside and Get Moving

A huge upside of being a dog owner is that every time your precious pooch goes out on a walk, you get to go along as well. Breathe in that fresh air, stretch those muscles and spend time with your best friend in the whole world. What could be better?

Don’t limit your walks to only strolls around the block. Our dogs love being out and about in nature and if they’re given the opportunity, our dogs will be overjoyed to help us explore the big, wide, exciting world waiting right outside our front doors.

If travelling more is one of your New Year’s resolutions, why not take your dog on various nature hikes? This will help both of you sate your wanderlust and is great for your health too. Today, there are plenty of apps that’ll help you find and identify great hiking trails in and around your area, as well as further away. When planning a hike for yourself and your trusted buddy, make the effort to plan out the best route for both of you.

Take care of your dog during your hikes by protecting them from the elements, as well as against nasty critters such as ticks and fleas hiding amongst the foliage. Consult your veterinarian about the best way to keep your pup protected against creepy crawlies year-round. Bravecto® is a fantastic choice for tick, flea and mite prevention and is widely available at veterinarians and vet stores across the country. Enjoy hikes without having to worry about whether your dog is falling victim to tiny parasitic pests or not. Keep in mind that an untreated dog may end up introducing ticks and fleas to your house and home. These parasites oftentimes carry diseases that lead to serious illness in dogs, other pets and humans.

A dog with a ball in its mouth jumping over a fallen tree trunk

Care Tip 3: Grow Your Dog Pack

Dogs are pack animals. This means they naturally tend to thrive in social situations. Whatever your pack looks like – whether it’s only yourself and your dog, or maybe includes some other family members and pets too – you want your dog to develop into a well-socialised canine.

Now, this may sound like a daunting process but don’t stress. There are plenty of easy ways for you to socialise your dog in a way that’s fun for both of you. For example, you can organise a doggy play date with friends who also own dogs or opt to sign up for an agility or training class at your local dog training facility. Dog training classes help your dog master listening and responding to everyday commands such as ‘sit’ and ‘stay’, while canine agility classes help your dog to exercise and improve both their mental and physical muscles at the same time.

Another exciting way to grow your dog pack is by bringing home a new pet. Whether you end up finding your new puppy at a local shelter or you get in touch with a trusted breeder, your existing dog may well benefit from becoming an older sibling. With another pup in the household, you’ll have double the amount of wet-nosed cuddles and pure love you already have (and that’s never a bad thing!).

Two women with their older dog and new puppy

Have a Doggone Good Year With Your Best Pal By Your Side

Whatever choices you make throughout 2021, make sure that they benefit not only yourself but your best canine pal as well. The bond you share with your pup is undoubtedly one of the strongest in the universe, so always make decisions that keep you both active, healthy and in good condition as you face everything this year has to offer together.

A couple having coffee while relaxing with their pug

One brand that will help you to keep your dog in a good condition is Bravecto®. Bravecto® for Dogs is one of the most fast-acting and long-lasting tick, flea and mite prevention treatments available on the market today. Choose between one of two treatments for canine companions: Bravecto® Chew and Bravecto® Spot-On for Dogs.

Give your dog a single tasty, chewy treat and they’ll remain protected against ticks, fleas and mites for 12 full weeks. Opt to apply the topical treatment to the exposed skin between your dog’s shoulder blades and they’ll remain tick-free for 4 months and flea-free for 6 months with just 1 dose!

Remember: care for your dog like you would care for yourself in 2021 and beyond.

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