10 Tips To Promote A Healthier Pet
1) Ensure a safe environment:
Make sure that your dog is not exposed to any potential hazards such as sharp objects and toxic chemicals (eg. insecticides, paints, solvents, antifreeze spillage). Use natural non-chemical alternatives for the lawn so that the dog does not ingest any toxic chemicals. There were occasions where I have found my dog eating grass. Not exactly sure why, but most vegetarians believe that dogs eat grass to either calm their upset stomach, make up for certain nutritional deficiencies (although grass is not nutritious), or just simply out of boredom. So ensure your pets environment is as safe as possible.
2) Provide plenty of water:
Prevent dehydration by giving your dog plenty of fresh water throughout the day. This is especially important on hot days.
3) Provide your dog with optimal nutrition:
It is important to realise that your dog's health is directly related to what you feed it. If your dog does not have a proper diet, he/she will display signs of poor health. These signs include dull coat, dry/itchy skin, flatulence, fatigue, unpleasant body odour, and other health issues. I think the best way to feed your dog is to mix canned and dry food together and supplement it with some raw ingredients such as carrots, apples, green lettuces, and broccoli. You can include a bit of raw meat a couple times a week. It's best to choose organic meat that are free from hormones and other chemicals.
4) Raw eggs to improve the dog's coat:
For a thick lustrous coat, add the yolk of a raw egg to your dog's meal a few times a week. As for the egg white, it should not be given to the dog more than once a week as it can interfere with protein balance.
5) Garlic to improve health:
It is a good idea to frequently give your dog fresh garlic as part of their diet. A quarter of a clove of finely minced garlic per 4.5kg of body weight. Garlic can provide your dog with a variety of health benefits such as boosting the immune system, fight infections, enhance liver function, reduce blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels, preventing blood clot formation in the vascular system, and keeps fleas at bay.
6) Yoghurt to improve digestion:
Yoghurt contains beneficial bacteria that maintain a healthy environment in your dog's digestive system. So add one tablespoon of plain natural yoghurt per 4.5kg of body weight as part of your dog's diet to improve digestion.
7) Maintain hygiene:
Bathing frequency depends on how dirty or how strong its natural odour is. It also depends on whether it is an inside or outside dog. If it is an inside dog, bathing once a week is recommended. For outside dogs, bathing once every few months is fine. Prior to bathing your dog, brush its coat thoroughly to remove any loose hair or untangle any knots. Frequent brushing is recommended in hotter months as the dog moults. Use lukewarm water to prevent chills or stress, then dry thoroughly.
8) Keep those flies away:
There are natural and healthy ways to prevent flies from hovering around your dog. A chemical-free product I know that is made for human use but also safe on pets is the Bushflower Body Spray. It contains a potent combination of pure organic essential oils and herbal extracts that insects do not like. A well-known ingredient used as a natural insect repellent is citronella oil. Citronella is derived from the stems and leaves of lemongrass plants. It has a sharp, tangy smell that insects find unpleasant. Other ingredients that insects find unpleasant include tea tree (malaleuca alternifolia), olive tea tree (leptospermum liversidgei) and lemon-scented tea tree (leptospermum petersonii) and neem (azadirachta indica) essential oils. Insects do not like plants that have lemon-scented leaves. The olive tea tree is reputed to have much higher concentrations of citronella than other lemon-scented plants. Neem oil is used by farmers as an insecticide and miticide to repel pests such as aphids and white flies. But people use insecticide with neem oil to repel mosquitoes and lice.
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9) Oral Health
If your dog doesn't mind having its teeth cleaned, you can gently scrub their teeth with a clean cloth or a dog toothbrush and water at least once a week. You could also try mixing up a paste of baking soda and water and use a small amount as a toothpaste. Other ways of improving your dog's oral health include giving them hard biscuits daily, which reduces plaque buildup, and give them something to chew on such as artificial dog bones and toys.
Dogs need exercise regularly to keep them active and healthy. Take you dog on walks daily. At least 15 minutes a day is better than not having one on that day. When you go for runs, take your dog with you so that both you and your dog will benefit from this exercise. Have a bit of fun with them so that they won't get bored.
Show your dog that you love and care about them. Give them plenty of praises and encourage good behaviour. Keep them happy and healthy!