The average lifespan of most dogs is 10-13 years, though some dogs, like Great Danes, may only live for 6. However, strengthening the quality of our pups’ lives through proper diet, exercise and socialization could extend their life expectancy.
Since we all want the best for our fur babies, try our 6 veterinarian-backed ways to improve your dog’s health and happiness.
1. Feed Your Dog Quality Food
Controlling the amount of food your dog eats is just half of the equation; you also have to consider what you’re feeding them. Although dogs are omnivores, they aren’t meant to eat too much meat, carbohydrates, or fats, as these food groups could lead to obesity and heart complications.
A balanced diet of vitamins, protein, and healthy fats should do the trick.Avoid most human foods, like onions, grapes, nuts, artificial sweeteners, sugars, bread, chocolate, and coffee.
Be sure to read all labels on manufactured dog food to ensure they’re free of BHA/BHT, artificial colors, STPP, salt, propylene glycol, and other filaments and sulfites.
2. Consider Adding Supplements
If you’re worried your pup isn’t getting all the nutrients they need from food, consider adding natural supplements to their diet. You can get dog-specific multivitamins from pet stores, but be sure to talk to your veterinarian first before giving your pup extra vitamins.
Natural supplements like CBD oil, found on HonestPaws.com, can even be helpful for reducing pain or soreness.
3. Exercise with Your Dog Frequent
One of the major components of health is adequate exercise for both our pups and ourselves. Depending on your living situation, your dog may get enough exercise running around your home or backyard, but others may not.
Exercise needs are also breed-specific. For example, Border Collies require 90 minutes of exercise daily, but Pomeranians only need 30 minutes.
It’s essential to research your pup’s individual needs to ensure you’re meeting them. Otherwise, they may start to put on weight, leaving them at a greater risk for diabetes, cardiovascular problems, kidney issues, and more. Do your best to walk or run with your dog once a day.
4. Give Them Lots of Love
Stress will cause all kinds of dog-related physical and mental diseases that can become chronic or irreversible. However, a healthy dose of love and care can help your dog lead a healthy, stress-free life.
Remember: you’re the center of your dog’s universe, so treat them like they’re the center of yours by hugging them, playing with them, and spending time with them.
5. Keep Their Living Space and Coat Clean
Both humans and animals enjoy being in a space that’s clean and well kept because it makes them feel less stressed and more energized. Cleaner homes leave fewer places for germs and bacteria to hide, which lowers the likelihood of you or your pup getting sick.
Plus, your dog’s fur/hair is less likely to be matted, dirty, or scraggly if you keep your carpets and floor clean.
Still, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t groom and wash your dog regularly! Since they spend a lot of their time playing outside, they’re bound to get dirty. Regardless, your pup still needs a regular grooming schedule. Good hygiene can prevent lung issues, infections, and/or parasites.
6. Take Your Dog to the Vet Regularly
The best health advice anyone can give is to take your dog to the vet for regular check-ups. Our furry friends aren’t able to self-diagnose their illnesses or tell us exactly what’s wrong, but a vet can spot a problem quickly and provide medical intervention.
What’s more, a veterinarian can offer valuable advice on how to improve your dog’s health and wellness in the long term.