Are You Slowly Killing Your Dog

Most of our readers see their pets as another member of the family and would do just about anything for them.

Unfortunately, we see some pet owners missing some very key components to the overall health of their dog, which can be very harmful to their pets. I know this is not intentional so I wanted to share this knowledge to educate others and make dogs happier and healthier!

1. Not Having Routine Dental Care for your Dog.

A study showed that regular tooth brushing could extend a dog’s life up to 3 years! When a dog has an infection in his mouth it can also enter into his blood stream and cause infections in his heart valves and other vital organs.

Dental problems can lead to heart, liver and kidney disease, which can affect the overall health of your dog.

Next time you are brushing your own teeth before bed, consider brushing your pups too. Even brushing your dog’s teeth once a month can make a difference. Proper chew toys like moose antlers can help remove plaque for healthy dog teeth.

Good Dog Teeth
Here are reasonably healthy dog teeth, of our 6 year old dog (at the time), Bruin

How to Brush Your Dog’s Teeth

You should always go to annual vet appointments so they can check our dogs teeth. Listen when they recommend a complete veterinary dental cleaning.  How so? It just may add years to his life!

I really like the line of Tropiclean products.  (buy here)

Check out the study here:

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Dog Chews Clean Teeth

 You might want to look into getting a moose antler for  your dog to chew on. Moose antlers help remove plaque build up and are made of calcium. They are great for dogs teeth and are mess free.

Buy MoosePrixieNaturally Shed Moose Antlers Dog Chews

2. Feeding your dog human food.

It is easy for people to feel bad that their dog has to eat the same boring food everyday. It is really hard to resist those begging eyes staring at you when you are at the dinner table. Many people end up giving in and treating their dog to table scraps.

This is OK if it is only small amounts and you are giving them food that will benefit them and not hurt them. Dogs bodies are very different from a humans, so food we love or that is even good for us may do harm to your pups body.

Here is a list of fruits and veggies you should avoid giving to you dog.

It is not only fruits and vegetables that can be unhealthy to your dog. Meats or foods with a high fat content can be very harmful and even cause pancreatitis.  Also, Xylitol is extremely toxic to dogs and can be found in more and more foods these days.  Most commonly I hear of dogs getting into their owners purse and eating gum containing Xylitol.

Last and pretty much common knowledge now a days is chocolate. With darker chocolates getting more popular these days please be extra careful because the higher the cocoa content the more toxic it is to a dog.

Your best bet is just sticking with a premium dog food and treats and skipping table scraps all together! Plus, I find that if my pets NEVER get human food, they don’t beg.

Making your own dog food using “human” food, but just make sure you do you research and include foods that will meet all your dogs nutritional needs.

You can also try raw dog food for it’s health benefits:

TruDog - Freeze Dried Raw Superfood - 975x250

3. Not exercising you dog.

Dogs need exercise to release their energy. This helps keeps them balanced, happy, and healthy. If the energy becomes pent up in the dog this can lead to obsessive or even aggressive behaviors because that is their way of releasing it.
Lack of exercise can also lead to obesity. Daily walks are a must and if you have a high energy dog even more may be required. Look into fun classes like obedience or agility.
Getting dogs exercise in the winter can be difficult, so we wrote this article for you:

4. Letting your dog get obese.

Obesity can result in serious adverse health effects, such as reducing the lifespan, even if your dog is only moderately obese. Multiple areas of the body are affected by excess body fat, including the bones and joints, the digestive organs, and the organs responsible for breathing capacity. Your vet will be able to tell you if you pup is at a healthy weight or not, but a good rule of thumb is being able to feel their ribs and seeing a defined waist when viewing from the side or above them.
Here is a great chart from Natural Balance to help determine if your pet is at his ideal weight:

5. Ignoring signs from your dog

As a dog groomer I see many dogs with health problems that may have gone unnoticed or untreated. Sometimes the owner has no idea when I explain my concerns at pick up and others have just been putting it off due to not wanted to pay an expensive vet bill.

I know vet visits get expensive, but as a dog owner it is your responsibility to make sure they get proper treatment. They can not tell us what hurts or why, so that slight limp or smelly ear please get it checked. I always try to put myself in their shoes.

Think of how bad an infection can hurt. Dogs must have a very high pain tolerance because many complain very little when not well. You know your dogs behaviors best, so all I am asking is to pay close attention when they seem to be acting different or “not themselves”.

6. Neglecting your dogs grooming needs.

As a pet grooming I find it extremely important to have your pet groomed every 6, 8 or 12 weeks (depending on your pets coat type). Long haired dogs can get severely matted if not groomed regularly which can hold body fluids(tears and urine) or feces close to their skin causing skin irritations and even infections.

It is also very uncomfortable for your dog, pulling on it’s skin as it moves or  causing poor circulation. Matted hair may also hide a serious injury. In extreme cases dogs have been found with such severe matting it has cut through the bone!

Please brush you dog and keep up with regular grooming appointments. Even a short haired pup should be brushed a couple times a week to help remove their dead coat. Longer coated dogs require daily brushing.

Activet brushes are the best you will find and come in many  combinations for different coat conditions and types.

Other Dog Care Articles to Check Out: