Posted on: July 27, 2022 Posted by: admin Comments: 0

As a cat or dog owner, you need to be as informed about your pet’s health. This is especially true since they depend on you for everything. To help you out, here are some tips from veterinarians for keeping your furry (or scaly) friend healthy and happy.

Get to know your animal’s “normal.”

This means paying attention to their energy levels, appetite, bathroom habits, etc. That way, you’ll be more likely to notice when something isn’t quite right.

Consider keeping a journal or logging these things, so you can reference them if needed. That’s why you always hear everywhere that having a pet is a big responsibility.

If you notice your animal is acting differently, don’t wait to take them for a check-up. The earlier you can get a diagnosis and start treatment, the better. This doesn’t mean you should run to the vet whenever your pet sneezes. But if you observe a sudden change in behavior or appearance, it’s always best to play safe.

Dogs and cats age differently.

A dog’s age is similar to a human’s age in that they mature quickly and then age more slowly. For example, a one-year-old dog is approximately the equivalent of a 15-year-old human. This means they are considered senior citizens when they reach seven years old.

On the other hand, Cats age more like humans in that they mature slowly and then age quickly. A one-year-old cat is approximately the equivalent of a 16-year-old human. So by the time they reach seven years old, they are considered elderly.

Spay or neuter your pet.

This has been a controversial subject whether or not to spay or neuter pets. Some pet owners believe that it is cruel to do so because it means altering their animal’s natural state. However, there are many good reasons for neutering and spaying your pet.

A study by the University of Georgia published in 2013 based on the medical records of 70,000 animal patients found that the life expectancy of neutered male dogs was 13.8 percent longer. Similarly, they saw that the life expectancy of spayed female cats was 26.3 percent longer.

In addition, millions of shelter animals are euthanized because there are simply not enough homes for them all. Spaying or neutering your pet helps reduce this problem.

Moreover, spaying or neutering can help improve your pet’s health. For example, female dogs spayed before their first heat cycle are much less likely to develop mammary cancer later in life. The risk of prostate cancer is also reduced for neutered male dogs. 

Feed your pet a balanced diet.

Like us humans, pets need a balanced diet to stay healthy. This means feeding them nutritious food and giving them the right amount of calories based on their age, breed, activity level, and any health conditions they may have.

Avoid feeding your pet table scraps because this can lead to obesity and other health problems. If you want to reward them with a treat, opt for something specifically made for them.

In addition, always remember that exercise is essential for physical and mental health. It helps reduce stress and anxiety, helps maintain a healthy weight, and can even help improve sleep quality.

Don’t forget dental care.

Cats and dogs need pet dental care as part of their regular vet visits. Like humans, plaque and tartar can build up on their teeth over time, leading to gum disease. Note that this can be painful for your pet and lead to other health problems if left untreated. 

Be cautious with human medications.

Don’t try to give your pet any medication without first consulting your veterinarian. Even something as harmless as ibuprofen can be toxic to animals.

The same goes for human food. Many safe foods for humans can be poisonous to pets. For example, chocolate is toxic to dogs, and onions can cause anemia in cats due to their organic compounds called disulfides and thiosulphates.

On the other hand, chocolates contain a caffeine-like chemical called theobromine that can be toxic to dogs because they cannot metabolize as humans do. To be safe, always ask your veterinarian first.

Get pet insurance.

Pet insurance can prepare you financially for your pet’s unexpected medical needs. It can help cover the costs of vet visits, prescriptions, surgeries (such as dog orthopedic surgery), medications, and more.

There are various pet insurance plans available, so make sure to research the one that best fits your needs and budget. You can even ask your vet for referrals.

A complete vaccine is not enough, so they need booster shots.

Many pet owners believe they no longer worry about getting sick once their animal is vaccinated. However, this is not the case.

Vaccines help build up your pet’s immunity to diseases, but they are not 100% effective. That’s why it’s vital to regularly get booster shots for your pet.

The frequency of booster shots depends on the disease and the vaccine used. For example, puppies need to be vaccinated for parvovirus every 3-4 weeks until they are 16 weeks old. After that, a booster shot every year is necessary.

Adult dogs need boosters for some diseases every 1-3 years, while others can last up to 7 years or more. Similarly, kitten vaccinations need to be boostered every 3-4 weeks until they are 16 weeks old, then yearly. Cats need boosters for some diseases every 1-3 years, while others can last up to 7 years or more.

In short, it’s essential to keep up with your pet’s vaccinations and boosters to keep them healthy and protect them from disease. Make sure to find a reliable animal hospital near you so you can get the care your pet needs.