Some tips to keep your dog safe and healthy.

Safety in the home

  • Lock away household cleaners, medicines and pesticides so your dog can’t access them
  • Put away electrical cords or leads that might be chewed
  • Always put away human food, like table scraps, that could be bad for your dog

Food and water

  • Choose balanced diets suitable for your dog – and carefully avoid things like chocolate, onions, garlic or macadamia nuts that can be very dangerous to dogs
  • Make sure their water bowl is kept full and fresh, and that you leave enough water if you’re away for the day, especially in summer

Protecting from pests

  • Treat your dog with quality dog-specific products to prevent ticks which can be fatal; watch for signs of ticks – changed appetite, bark or urination/defecation, smelly ears/mouth or pawing at them, itchy/abnormal skin, coughing or sneezing, discharge, limping, listlessness. If in doubt, call the vet and get advice
  • Worm your dog regularly with a quality tablet or paste to protect your dog from intestinal worms – and protect your family’s health as well
  • Guard against heartworm with yearly injections – check with your vet when the next one is due
  • Protect your dog from fleas – treat regularly with high-quality “spot on” applications. Don’t use cat flea protection on dogs as this can be harmful

Protecting from illness

  • Take your dog for an annual check-up at the vet. Make sure all vaccinations are up to date
  • Never give a dog human pain relief or other human medications – these can cause serious illness or even death
  • Watch for signs of illness such as changed appetite, bark or urination/defecation, smelly ears/mouth or pawing at them, itchy/abnormal skin, coughing or sneezing, discharge, limping, listlessness. If in doubt, call a vet and get advice

Exercise and movement

  • Your dog needs exercise – for its physical and mental health and happiness. Throwing a ball, teaching them the tug game or providing puzzle-style enrichment toys to encourage dogs to use their brain is a great start
  • Try to keep your dog away from roads. Keep it in a fenced yard or indoors, and put it on a leash near roads.
  • Remember to lodge your dog ownership details with your local council
  • Consider pet insurance – contact us for details

Storm phobia

  • Like humans, animals can be terribly frightened by the sound of thunderstorms. Dogs and cats have even better hearing than us and are sensitive to atmospheric pressure so they are even more prone to ‘storm phobia’ or storm anxiety/distress.
  • The key is to plan ahead and be aware of the signs of anxiety, especially if you already know your animal is storm/noise phobic.
  • Don’t tie them up or leave them outside in the backyard. Bring them inside into a ‘safe room’ where they can’t hear the thunder and have their bed, and a favourite treat to eat (some might be too anxious to eat). Maybe even turn on some soothing music to drown out the noise or try your pet wearing a ‘Thundershirt’. A relaxing massage might help too!
  • For chronic sufferers, owners should consult their vet or veterinary behaviourist for medical intervention. Owners should also practice desensitisation techniques and wearing thundershirts outside storm season so their pet is already able to cope.
  • The same applies during fireworks, which can be equally scary for noise phobic animals.

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