Dog Health is Very Important!
Dog health is so important! I have several areas I focus on that keeps my dog physically and mentally healthy. (And me too for that matter). So let me tell you about a few of them below.
Exercise: I enjoy exercising my dog and doing many different activities. I take my dog for short walks, long (45 min. +) walks, short runs on the leash, off lease runs (plus you get to practice your commands), bike runs on leash, swimming, and off leash runs with my four wheeler.
Mental Training: I have found that stimulating a dogs mind keeps them out of trouble. Simple enough right? If your dog is bored then they will find new ways to keep themselves occupied. Doggy boredom usually results in chewing and/or destroying something they shouldn't.
I always keep several items inside my house to keep my dog from getting bored. These include rawhide bones, Kong chew toys, and anything else that interests my dog. I usually do not leave these out around the house, especially if I am home. I like to use these items only when my dog is actually bored. A perfect example is a rainy day where you can't go for a walk or be outside.
Another mental exercise my dog enjoys is training. All of my dogs have enjoyed learning new "tricks" or simply going over things they already know. Start basic such as: Sit & Lay down. I DO NOT TEACH SHAKE!! I personally think this develops a bad habit of pawing, and I do not want my dog pawing random people or little kids in the park looking for some TLC.
Plus, I always use verbal and hand signals when training my dogs. Then I use only verbal and then only hand commands. This keeps things different and forces your dog to focus on YOU. After some of the simple stuff I usually progress with: Stay, Come, Door, etc. I also like to do off lease training making sure my dog will respond to me and come back when I need them too. I use whistle commands outside because it seems to get their attention better. I usually don't use treats, just good old fashion love and affection.
Diet: When my dogs are puppies I stay away from corn based products as much as possible because this can casue all sorts of dog health issues. There are many quality brands of prrremium dog foods available just make sure to read the labels AND ingredients. I usually pick a medium priced dog food because of my budget. Also, I have been feeding my dogs raw eggs for years.
18 + yrs. ago I was told about this "trick" from my local country vet to help in dog health. He would always have some scrawny pitiful looking puppy in the lobby that had been "dropped off." Next time I would visit the vet that pitiful puppy had turned into a nice looking dog with a nice glossy coat. Plus, we all know that eggs are a great source of protein.
Over the years I have found that feeding too many raw eggs over the course of a few days causes your pooch to have an upset tummy. I would suggest feeding raw eggs only once every 7-10 days.
Overall: Set limitations and boundaries with your dog or puppy early and this will help both of you. Keep your expectations and rules consistent while training. This, along with the above information should provide a well balanced, healthy, and happy dog that has a consistent level of dog health!
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"When a man's best friend is his dog, that dog has a problem." -- Edward Abbey