10 Things Never to Forget as a Dog Owner

  1. You Are the Owner. As much as you love your pup and the two of you are the best of friends, never forget that you are indeed the owner and the one in charge. Just as it is with kids, you’ll need set rules and expectations for your pup and stick to them.
  2. Be Consistent. After you set rules, be consistent in sticking to those rules. For example, if you do not want your dog on your bed, you cannot relax one day and allow it and then get mad about your dog being on your bed the next day. It is confusing to your pet and is simply not fair.
  3. Your Dog Cares. As your dog, typically they will strive for your approval and love. Unless your dog has not received proper training or care, he should not act out in a rebellious way.
  4. Dogs Need Training. Dogs are animals and can have a bit of a wild streak. If you adopt a pet or a brand new puppy, ensure they are properly trained either by yourself or a professional.
  5. Dogs Need Care. Dogs are not self-sufficient. They are in fact, like having a child. They will need to be fed daily. Many breeds will need brushed and groomed regularly. They require proper training and should be played with often. Dogs need to be taken for medical attention at times (both for well and sick visits). You’ll need to explore what the appropriate dog containment system might be best suited for your living situation to ensure they are physically safe at all times.
  6. Dogs Need Attention. Simply put, dogs want your attention and your love. You can provide this either through play time or cuddle time. Enjoy it.
  7. Dogs Are Great Exercise Partners. Dogs need exercise and so do you. Exercise together. Take walks in the neighborhood, go for run on a trail; explore nature; go for a hike in the mountains or spend a day at the dog park. You both will feel better and be in great shape.
  8. Dogs Understand Emotion. It is probably one of the primary reasons why people say, “Dogs are a man’s best friend.” They are attuned with how you are feeling and respond appropriately. Are you bummed? You will find your dog at your feet or cuddled up next to you. Excited, watch how hyper your dog becomes in sharing your excitement.
  9. Dogs Are Great Protectors. Dogs love their owners so much they will do what it takes to help ward off danger. Dogs will also step in to protect you when imminent danger is near or you are threatened. Make sure your dog is trained properly to reduce any mistaken mishaps and never pretend to be in a serious situation just to watch your dog react.
  10. Dogs Do Not Live Forever. Your relationship with your dog has grown through your years together, but unfortunately dogs to not live as long as humans and the likelihood of having to say goodbye to your beloved pet is very high. It will be extremely emotional for you and your family. Teach your children early that dogs are a part of your family for a short time and someday you will all need to say goodbye, but remember, all dogs go to heaven.

Susan Wright, DMV is the staff expert on dog containment systems for DogFenceDIY.com. Susan is a practicing veterinarian of more than 10 years and has written several articles on the proper care of domestic pets.

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