Trips to the vet are always expensive. Here are 3 cost effective things you can do at home to potentially help keep some of your medical costs down.
Ear infections are a common occurrence in dogs, particularly in those with dropped ears. There are three important things that you need to know about dogs’ ears:
1. They’re sensitive, so they need regular maintenance to prevent infections.
2. Dogs don’t want their ears cleaned, so you’re going to have to work with them.
3. If you don’t do it the right way, you can cause serious damage.
Cleaning your dogs ears on a weekly basis can help prevent wax build up that can lead to an infection. You want to buy a dog ear cleaner and some cotton wool/pads. Saturate the cotton wool with ear cleaner. Have your dog sit in front of you, between your legs, or in the cradle position.
Wrap the cotton around your index finger and gently massage it inside your puppy’s ear canal. If the ear is continually very dirty, or has a bad odour, you should seek medical attention. Ensure that the experience is positive for him, one tried-and-true method is to have a bag of treats ready to offer each time that your dog cooperates during the process.
Dogs get plaque and tarter build up just like humans. Grown dogs can learn to become comfortable with dog teeth cleaning, but make things easier for yourself by working with your dog as a puppy. Good quality food and treats help, but sometimes this is not enough. Try and choose a time when your dog has had a decent amount of exercise, so he’s more inclined to sit still for the procedure. Don’t overdo it the first few times. Start slowly and quit if your dog gets agitated, even if you don’t brush the whole mouth. You can increase the time every day as he gets used to it. Have your dog sit in front of you, between your legs, or in the cradle position. Using a small amount of toothpaste, gently run the brush over the surface of each tooth. This takes some getting used to so a quick “in and out” will suffice at the start.
Brushing your dogs fur helps to stimulate the oils in their skin keeping the coat healthy and shiny. It also helps dogs with long coats from getting knots or mattes in their fur. Regular grooming is an important part of responsible dog care, even if it may seem like your dog is taking care of those needs by himself. If you don’t have a routine set, start small. Attempt one task each time. Brush one day. Then bathe the next. And trim the nails on yet another day. The shorter you can keep each session, the better. Anything that gets caught on your puppy’s skin or prevents air from getting to the skin, such as knotted fur, can cause sores to fester.
Attached Images: ‘Carrot’ the Labrador x Border Collie