5 Risky Mistakes Dog Owners Make

October 25th, 2016

There are some risky mistakes you could be making as a dog owner without even realizing it. Here are some of the more egregious mistakes dog owners make that can be easily remedied.

img_5178You Let Your Dog Walk You

Working walks are a great way to build your relationship with your dog, establish your dominance, and reinforce obedience. If you let your dog do what he wants to on a walk, he’s likely to do the same inside the house.

You Overlook Ticks

After a walk in the woods, you check yourself for these pests, right? Don’t forget about your dog. Tick bites put your furry pal at risk for Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and a handful of other diseases. If you find one, remove it with tweezers, and be careful to get all of the head and not to crush it.

You Don’t Deworm

Roundworms are common parasites. They cause diarrhea and vomiting, and may lead to a serious illness. But they’re a threat to people, too. An infected pet can spread the tiny eggs in soil or sand. Kids may swallow the eggs when they put dirty fingers in their mouths. When the worms hatch inside people, they can cause blindness and other tissue damage. Ask your vet about regular deworming for your pet.

You Skip Flea Medicine

Pets without these meds aren’t the only ones who will pay the price. Fleas will quickly set up shop on their skin, especially in summer and fall, and fill your home with their eggs and young. Some people wind up covered in itchy sores. Fleas can also spread serious diseases to people. Ask your vet about long-term flea medication, and put a routine reminder on your calendar to give it to your pet.

You Don’t Spay or Neuter

Millions of cats and dogs live on the street or end up euthanized because of unwanted litters. Still, many people are reluctant to spay or neuter their pets. The fact is, it’s a healthy choice for an animal. It lowers the risk of breast cancer in females and testicular cancer in males. Neutered males are also less likely to run away from home, mark their territory, or act aggressive. Talk to your vet about the decision to neuter or spay your animal.