Within the past week, you probably noticed the dramatic change from the sultry summer air to the refreshing fall air. We did too! And while the cooler weather is better for all of us pups, there are still some important, easily overlooked, health tips to keep us barking and diving into the big piles of leaves we are already imagining.
Cooler weather means lots of runs around tall grasses and wooded areas, if they are nearby. But it’s still not cold enough to be rid of one big annoyance facing pups—fleas and ticks. Once they latch on to dog’s skin, fleas can cause a condition known as flea allergy dermatitis, which is an itchy, allergic rash that can cause a pup to scratch out patches of fur. Ticks can also cause a host of potentially dangerous illnesses, including Lyme disease.
Thankfully over-the-counter medicines stop fleas and ticks. However, sometimes they don’t work, so it might be necessary to see a vet, who will have to prescribe a more powerful medication.
Almost everyone is familiar with the old English nursery rhyme “This Old Man” which tells us to “give a dog a bone” but as you gear up for a session of cooking elaborate holiday meals, we encourage you not to give your pup a bone. While it’s tempting to give your pup the leftover meat scraps from a hard-earned meal, many of the bones can splinter too easily and cause your pup to choke. Instead, consider going to your nearest pet store and getting a compressed rawhide bone. (And here’s a list of other human foods a dog should never eat. Lay off the pumpkin pie, too.)
If you’ve noticed your pup hasn’t been inactive, is having irregular bowel movements, or has a lack lackluster coat, you might want to check what dog food you’re feeding him. Diet matters to overall health. In this way, pups are very much like humans.
Maybe you’re on a budget, but giving your dog cheap, filler-laden dog food is like you eating McDonald’s Big Macs three times a day. Even though dogs foods with natural ingredients are more expensive, they are more nutrient rich, meaning you have to feed your pup less overall. Not only is the price difference marginal, but your pup will be more energetic, and have a shiny, luxurious coat that other owners will envy.
These are just three easy things to consider to get your dog in the best possible shape. While some of these tips might require a veterinarian’s smarts, most are things you, the pup owner, can do with their own ingenuity. For more tips, and help with what you can do from home, check out a list of fun facts by our friends at the American Kennel Club.