Pet Ownership Is a Big Responsibility
Our pets are more like us than you might think. People seem to think that the term “dumb animals” means “stupid” – when it actually means mute. Even then, it’s an untrue statement. Animals can communicate, the question is, can you understand them when they do?
It’s important to remember that your dog or cat has emotions too. Our pets need the know that they are loved and cared for. In return, they show their love for us in a variety of ways. Cats will often purr, rub their heads and bodies against you, and even kneed you when they are feeling content and happy. Dogs will rub or lean against you and lick you (or give you doggie kisses!).
Taking Proper Care of Your Pet is an Important Responsibility.
Taking proper care of your pet is an important responsibility of pet ownership. Unfortunately, it’s often the overlooked aspect of pet ownership. Proper pet care takes time, patience and money. But, it shows our pets that they are important to us.
Proper care of your pet begins with feeding and grooming and includes regular visits to the veterinarian.
There are plenty of resources available on pet care, so there really is no excuse for not providing proper care for your pet. You can rent or purchase videos, check books out from the library or purchase them and, of course, you can ask your veterinarian for advice.
Simple but essential tasks you can address at home for your cat or dog include regular baths. A great idea is to made this a general at-home wellness check, by checking their paws and ears, and trimming their nails at the same time.
Cleanliness and Sanitation of Pets
Cleanliness and sanitation plays an important role in your pet’s health and well being, and can even affect your own! Don’t just keep your pet clean, but also follow the same rules you would for yourself. Do you clean your pet’s dishes? You clean yours. I would wager after every use! Why should your pet’s bowls be any different?
Another important thing to stay on top of with your pet is fleas and, depending on where you live, ticks may also be a common problem. Flea and tick bites aren’t just annoying, they can also cause health issues. Many pets are allergic to flea bites, and will lose their hair during the worst of flea season is they become infested. Even if your pet isn’t affected that that extent, flea bites itch and are irritating to your pet. Be sure to use a good flea deterrent year round — not just in the summer — so that your pet’s fleas don’t get out of hand. You might want to consider making that a flea AND tick deterrent to solve both problems with one topical solution.
Don’t Forget Dental Care
Dental care is another essential — and often overlooked — part of pet care. You can and should brush your pet’s teeth regularly at home. And, if you have a small breed dog, I highly recommend getting regular dentals done by your veterinarian to preserve your pet’s teeth. It is the rule, not the exception, that most small dogs have big dental problems. Taking care of your pet’s teeth will prevent gum diseases or other health conditions that you might not suspect would be related to poor oral hygiene.
Pet Proof Your Home
Finally, proper pet care at home includes keeping dangerous household products out of reach. Look at being a pet owner the same way you would look at being a parent and pet-proof your home. It only takes a moment for your pet to ingest something lethal.
Pet Ownership Shouldn’t Be Taken Lightly
Pet ownership shouldn’t be taken lightly. It is a big responsibility. The average life span for a cat or dog is anywhere from 8 to 15 years. Make sure you are ready to make a long-term commitment before bringing home that little bundle of fur. But, if you’re up to the job, I can promise you this: you’ll be rewarded with a love like no other from your furry companion!