Today, we’re handing over to our in-house Pet Health Consultant, Nicole (who has years of experience working with dogs).
Below, you can find her Top 3 Tips for looking after your dog’s joints, oral hygiene, skin & coat condition and optimal overall health – information you won’t find on Google – check them out, now…
Your Dog’s Joints…
1. LOW IMPACT EXERCISE
Wear and tear of joints throughout a dog’s life means that mobility problems are common in older pups. Try to relieve some of the pressure off your dog’s joints by trying new forms of low-impact exercise like swimming or short lead walks. Your pup will be thanking you for helping to re-build their muscles, and increasing their overall strength and stability.
2. WARM, COMFY DOG BEDS
Joint pain doesn’t stop just because dogs lie down – in fact, many dogs struggle to get comfortable on flat, solid surfaces. Provide your pup with a plush bed, covered in many fluffy blankets and pillows alongside their toys. During the colder months, you may even want to consider a heated bed or blanket, which will provide even greater comfort for sore joints. Specially designed orthopedic beds are also available for dogs if they are in a lot of pain.
3. KEEP YOUR DOG TRIM & LEAN
Obesity puts excessive strain on joints, which will lead to faster joint degeneration, and thus an earlier onset of joint disease. You can maintain this ideal state by calculating your pup’s breed-specific ideal weight, formulating an appropriate feeding plan, and exercising your dog regularly.
But don’t worry if your dog is already experiencing joint pain. That’s why we’re here.
Our blend of proprietary ingredients (Glucosamine, Turmeric, Green-Lipped Mussels, Salmon Oil, and Calcium) in our Joint Care chews are the most effective for preventing the issues from getting worse – or from developing at all.
Your Dog’s Dental Care…
Before you jump into trying to brush your puppy’s teeth, get them used to having their mouth touched and looked at. When your pup is relaxed, gently lift up their lips and run your finger along the gum line. If they sit still, give them lots of rewards and praise! If your pup gets either excited or aggressive, take a break and start again. Slowly progress the training so that they are happy to let you open their mouth and inspect their teeth.
2. TEETH BRUSHING
Once you’ve established the basics, it’s time to start brushing! Using a toothbrush specially designed for dogs is important, as human toothbrushes can be too abrasive. Start without toothpaste to get them used to it, gently brushing their teeth on either side. There are several types of doggy toothpaste available, but keep an eye out for an enzymatic toothpaste. This means it contains enzymes that help to break down plaque and bacteria even after you’ve stopped brushing.
3. DENTAL TOYS
In the wild, dogs would have chewed on bones, which removes plaque and debris from the outside of the tooth. There are many synthetic bones and chew toys available that are designed to strengthen your dog’s gums and teeth. This is especially important if your pup is on a food that is mostly soft, like wet food, as they don’t get a chance to remove the build-up around their gums. If you notice any missing teeth, red swollen gums, yellow-brown tartar, or bad breath, then these could all be signs of dental problems and you should book an appointment with your vet.
Your Dog’s Skin & Coat Health…
1. KEEP UP TO DATE WITH TREATMENTS
Flea bites are the most common cause of skin hypersensitivities in dogs. If your dog does have fleas, remember to treat the house coo, to truly eradicate and prevent re-infestation. The skin is the largest organ on the body – remember to address and treat ear and paw issues too, as these are an extension of skin disease!
2. AVOID ALLERGENS
This is the most useful and effective method of preventing the itching triggers for your pet. These include allergens causing food allergies, environmental allergies, and parasitic allergies.
3. CONTROL THE ITCH
Try your best to control your pet’s itching! Allergies can manifest as skin reactions and dogs that excessive scratch can damage their skin, leading to open wounds and secondary skin infections.
Your Dog’s Gut Health…
1. ADVANTAGES OF PROBIOTICS:
Probiotics promote the most optimum bacterial gut microflora, which results in improvement of nutrient digestion, inhibiting the growth of ‘bad’ bacteria, improved gut barrier function, down-regulation of intestinal inflammatory responses, and improving overall immunity.
2. PROBIOTICS FOR INFECTION CONTROL:
If your pup is known to have recurring infections or inflammatory diseases, probiotics may facilitate less frequent use of antibiotics. Probiotics are emerging as equally and potentially more effective tools for infection control in the long-term, which help with re-establishing and maintaining a healthy microflora in the gastrointestinal tract.
3. SYMPTOMS OF POOR GUT HEALTH IN DOGS:
Imbalances or overgrowth of the wrong species of bacteria causes direct damage to the lining of the gut in addition to enterotoxin production. This causes cell death and a decrease in absorption of nutrients leading to malabsorption, malnutrition, and exacerbated fluid secretion. Diarrhea (fatty or bloody), weight loss, and other symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease are often an indication that your pup needs help in improving its intestinal microbalance!
Your Dog’s Overall Health…
1. HIGH-QUALITY DIET
Nutrition is at the forefront of medicine today. Dogs fed a high-quality diet, including all the necessary vitamins, minerals, essential fats, and current protein and carbohydrate proportions, all from quality sources, will thrive! Some benefits include healthy skin and coat, a strong immune system, as well as increased gastrointestinal health and mental acuity. Remember – a healthy outside starts from a healthy inside!
2. A LEAN & HEALTHY WEIGHT
Overweight dogs or obese dogs are predisposed to having serious medical implications. It can lead to a shortened lifespan, heart and respiratory disease, arthritis, and diabetes. Incorporate exercise into your dog’s daily routine and try not to over-feed them with high calorific foods. Gaining weight is much easier than losing it – we promise!
3. MENTAL STIMULATION
Just like us, dogs get bored if they have the same routine every single day. They love exploring the world, learning new tricks, and pleasing us with their (often funny) behavior. Try to keep them mentally stimulated and challenged by walking to new places, making them work or hunt for their food, and meeting new friends often.
Just remember – prevention is always the best medicine!