Your dog is your companion: they're loyal, affectionate and an invaluable addition to your family.
Find the right dog breed
Finding the most suitable breed of dog to suit your particular lifestyle and understanding the responsibility that comes with ownership is important before you adopt or purchase a dog. At Sydney Animal Hospitals, our vet healthcare team can discuss dog care, breed-specific medical problems and routine health care such as vaccinations, flea and tick control, desexing and worming that will become part of your dog's care.
After purchasing your puppy or dog
There are many important facets of dog care. Here are a few to consider:
- Bedding such as washable rugs, cushions or blankets need to be provided in a weatherproof kennel or indoors.
- Providing a secure area such as a dog-proof yard is essential. Leaving your dog unsupervised when tethered is not advisable.
- Daily exercise and boredom prevention will be needed to help avoid dog behavioural and health problems. Your dog views you as its owner as being part of its pack and will develop behavioural issues if it feels neglected or excluded.
- Socialising your dog with people and other dogs from an early age is important if your dog is to learn suitable interactive behaviours.
- Annual pet health check each year. A once-a-year health check is the equivalent of you seeing your doctor once every five to eight years. As with people, the risk to dogs of cancer, diabetes, obesity, arthritis, heart disease and other serious conditions all increase with age.
- Routine vaccinations, flea and tick control and worming are also recommended. A visit to us is also a good opportunity to ask about nutrition, behaviour and other issues.
- Healthy and balanced nutrition is essential. This will provide protein to build the body, fats for skin and coat health, carbohydrates for energy, and minerals and vitamins for good bone development and healthy tissues.
- Regular teeth cleaning to keep your dog's teeth clean. This will minimise tartar build-up on your pet’s teeth.
- Fresh water should always be available. Water bowls should be kept clean and placed in the shade.
- Grooming and brushing is essential. This is especially important in long-haired breeds. Dog grooming removes dust, dead skin, loose hairs, grass seeds and tangles, and it also assists to shorten the coat moult, which occurs every autumn and spring.
- Washing your dog. Dirty or smelly dogs should be bathed. Be careful as frequent shampooing can strip the natural oils from the coat and cause skin dryness and irritation.
Our Sydney Animal Hospitals' veterinary healthcare team can discuss routine health care for your dog.