When you bring a new dog into your home, you want to do everything that you reasonably can to give your fur baby the highest possible quality of care. Here are a few things that you can do to take excellent care of your pet’s health.
Establish a Relationship With a Well-Reviewed Veterinarian
When you are looking for a great veterinarian for your new pet, remember that the closest vet might not be the best option. Of course, the nearest practitioner could be fantastic, but put some due diligence into your search and check out reviews.
When possible, it may be advantageous for your pet to have regular exams with the same doctor rather than seeing a different doctor in a group practice for every examination. A doctor who has a good baseline reading on your pet’s health may be able to detect and diagnose potential problems than a provider who isn’t familiar with your pet.
Keep Up With At-Home Dental Care
Oral hygiene is one of the most foundational but also one of the most commonly overlooked aspects of caring for pets. Dogs need an ongoing, at-home oral health care regimen to prevent gum disease, tooth loss, and acute infections. Usually, it is best to get dogs into the habit of brushing early in their development, even before their adult teeth have fully come in.
For many older dogs who are not used to having a person brush their teeth, brushing is a real struggle. If you’ve rescued an older dog that vehemently protests when you try to brush its teeth, review a few pointers on how to clean dogs teeth without the fuss.
Try to incentivize it to sit still for brushing with treats, and use a toothpaste that it thinks is tasty. Enhance its oral health care routine with dental treats and toys designed to scrape away tartar.
Identify Food Intolerances
Digestive problems in dogs are fairly common. In many cases, episodic diarrhea isn’t the product of an illness or ingesting something hazardous but rather simple intolerances. Find out what foods your dog doesn’t tolerate well to spare it from digestive discomfort.
Your veterinarian can run a series of tests, or order an at-home kit that uses a small sample of your pet’s fur. After you send a sample to a test provider, you can get a detailed list of findings in around two weeks.
Taking excellent care of a pet doesn’t necessarily entail spending a ton of money on stuff like food and treats. That said, there’s no way around the fact that caring for a pet can really add up.
Create a monthly pet budget that itemizes your recurring pet’s basic care expenses. Begin by identifying a few key line items such as food, treats, and medical treatment. Leave a little contingencies in each so you’ll have some breathing room.
By creating a budget and tracking your expenditures, you can make sure that you don’t overspend on the things that your pet can do without and rest assured about affording essential care.
Consider Pet Health Insurance
Enrolling in a health insurance plan for your pet is a great way to make the cost of medical care more predictable and affordable. Emergency treatments tend to be expensive. Likewise, if your dog develops a serious, chronic health condition, your vet bills could reach staggering proportions.
The best pet health insurance plans can equip you to handle unexpected illnesses and accidents. There are also plans that cover wellness exams and vaccinations, but the cost is generally comparable to the value of the benefits.
However, spreading these payments out over a year could make medical expenses more manageable. Be aware that many health plans do not pay providers directly. Instead, they reimburse you after you have paid for treatment.
Lastly, remember that your dog is counting on you. Planning ahead and staying on top of preventive treatment will help you keep your dog healthy and happy.