Without regular care, the health and well being of your pet can really suffer. The following are my recommendations to ensure optimal health in your dog or cat.
Monthly nail trimming is a must! Split or torn nails often cause dogs to walk further back on their paws, causing misalignment through the legs, shoulder and back, which may result in premature arthritis. I offer walk-in nail trimming in my Centennial pet grooming shop, which takes less than 5 minutes.
Keep up dental care and teeth cleaning. You can do this yourself daily or a couple of times a week. We stock brushes, handy wipes with dental solution and a variety of "cheater products" – water additives, spray on dental solution and treats that help with plaque and tarter. If the teeth are neglected, all kinds of bacteria grow throughout the body, which is unhealthy for both the animals and the humans that they love to lick.
Regular pet grooming is a must even in the winter. While you might decide to leave their coats longer, they still require regular bathing, nail trimming and ear cleaning to avoid wax build-up and ear infections.
Quality dog food or cat food is essential. You are better off spending a little extra to ensure a good diet that keeps your pet healthy, rather than spending the money at the vet. Read the labels!
- Cheaper food is full of fillers, which cause allergies, dry skin with flaking and itching, as well as yeast infections in the ears. The number one food allergy is corn, which causes more dander. Cheap foods are filled with it.
- High sugar content also causes diabetes and obesity, which affects the health and life span of your pet.
- Too many treats means you are literally killing your animal with love. They also need omega 3's and 6's, because of the dryness in Colorado.
- Smaller dogs require different food than big dogs. If you feed a big dog too much protein, it affects their growing plates which may lead to problems like hip dysplasia.
- In my Centennial pet supply shop, I stock Breeders Choice Avoderm, which is formulated for skin and coat. It's what I feed to my own animals.
Cats need to have their ears cleaned regularly and claws trimmed to prevent ingrown nails. Even though they groom themselves, they still need a bath (can be a dry/waterless one) a couple of times a year. Regular brushing makes their coats shiny, and it is relaxing for both owners and cats.
I encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns with me or your vet as they arise, rather than waiting until they are far along.