Author: Christin Sander, Health Writer
Dogs are social creatures that require human love, attention and understanding. Keeping your dog happy takes ample time, effort and consideration. Dogs require proper training, regular exercise, a healthy diet and mental stimulation to be truly healthy and happy. Just like humans, dogs are complex creatures with a variety of mental, physical and emotional needs.
Here are seven tips to ensure your dog is getting all he needs to truly thrive.
Play with Them
Play catch, Frisbee or other interactive games where you participate in the activity, rather than just giving your dog toys to go chew on in the corner. Dogs love human interaction and thrive when you take time out of your day to give them one-on-one attention. A simple ten minute game of fetch can give your pet the much needed exercise and human contact he needs to be happy and healthy.
In addition to walks on a leash, let your dog run in a wide open area when possible. Dogs love to run and play in wide open spaces and explore new areas. If you can't let your dog run free, walk him in new locations frequently to appease his curiosity and sense of adventure.
Many dog breeds are natural swimmers and live for this kind of exercise. If you have a dog that is drawn to water, do your best to take him swimming when possible. There are some public beaches that allow dogs to swim. You can also give your dog his own swimming area by installing a kiddie pool in your backyard.
Keeping your dog's hair and nails trimmed, and cleaning his teeth and ears are all important to his health and well-being. Dogs with thick, long hair are more comfortable with their fur trimmed short in the hot summer months. Cleaning your dog's ears and teeth can prevent disease and discomfort from tooth decay and ear mites. If you can't regularly groom your pet, hire a grooming service.
Dogs thrive when they are given tasks and toys that engage their brain. Just like humans, our pets need regular mental stimulation to avoid boredom and the restlessness and destructive behaviors that often follow. In fact, teaching your dog new tricks can help make sure he is stimulated enough mentally to stay out of trouble.
Dogs that are properly trained and know what is expected of them are happier and better adjusted. Dogs crave proper discipline because it provides a sense of stability. Dogs are pack animals by nature that rely on a hierarchal structure to thrive. They look to their owners to be dominant and in control. Proper discipline and training is an essential skill that can be learned in obedience classes. These classes also help socialize the dog with other people and animals.
Some dogs are prone to nervous dispositions even when their owners are doing everything they can. There are natural remedies that can help keep your dog calm and happy. Homeopathic remedies like PetCalm and Problem Pet Solution are completely safe and effective for soothing nervous anxiety, hyperactivity and biting.