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How to Be a Responsible Dog Owner

Sep 22, 2010

photoMany dog owners, despite having good intentions, sometimes fall short of their responsibilities. And it’s not just new owners; some people who have had their pets for years also have the same problem.

To be a good pet owner, one needs to be well-informed. Once you know what you have to do and what works, though, things will become a lot easier.

If you’re just planning to get a dog, make sure that you’re ready to take responsibility for one before you do so. If you are set on adding a new member to your family or are already a dog owner, here are some basic do’s that will keep both you and your furry friend happy:

1. Set aside some time to play with your pooch every day. This is a great chance for you to bond. Playtime also promotes brain development. In addition, your dog will appreciate the attention and have a happier disposition.

2. Make sure your dog gets all of his shots. This is not only to keep him healthy, but also because some vaccines are required by law.

3. Take your dog for a walk at least once a day. Dogs have an inherent migratory instinct which can be satisfied by a daily walk. Walk side by side and keep the leash loose – this helps your pet recognize you as the pack leader, which in turn keeps him well behaved. Furthermore, walking is great exercise for both dog and owner.

4. Give your canine companion toys to play with. This promotes physical and mental stimulation, just like in children. You can use a tennis ball or a Frisbee, or you can buy toys that are especially designed for dogs. Toys keep your pet occupied while you do other things.

5. Let your dog socialize with other people and animals. Interaction is just as important for dogs as it is for humans. It makes them calmer, happier, and better adjusted. It’s also easier to find a dog sitter if your pet is used to being around people.

Remember, being a pet owner is a lifelong commitment. Don’t just bond with your dog during playtime, but every chance you get. There are many more things that you can do to be a responsible owner, but the above list is a good start.

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