Let’s be honest; the number one reason any of us get a dog is that they are incredible companions. Dogs are loyal, fun, cuddly, and cute. But, there is a lot more, to taking care of a dog, than just the fun stuff. Once you decide to adopt a pet, you effectively become its parent and must accept your responsibilities as such. One of the main priorities when it comes to caring for your dog is to maintain its health. It is your job to ensure all its organs are functioning properly to keep your dog happy and healthy and prevent it from succumbing to any illnesses. Dogs, just like humans, are prone to heart conditions. So, here are a few helpful tips on how to keep your dog’s heart strong.
A Healthy Diet
A balanced, nutritious diet is the most important aspect contributing to your dog’s health. Not only does a healthy diet help maintain your dog’s health, by providing all the nutrients he or she needs, but it is the best way to keep your canine companion’s heart strong and blood pressure regulated. That is why veterinarians suggest you opt for low-sodium dog food as these options contain the adequate requirement of salt. Furthermore, you should always read the label on the package to gain a greater understanding of the types of food you are putting into your beloved pet’s body. This way, you can avoid conditions, such as allergies, skin irritations, and any other reactions your dog might have to certain foods.
It is of the utmost importance to know the weight category within which your pet belongs to. The breed and size of your dog determine their ideal healthy weight. That is why you must regularly consult with your veterinarian to monitor your dog’s weight and maintain a healthy weight by controlling your puppy’s food intake. Just like humans, overweight dogs will have a higher susceptibility to heart conditions, thus it is important you make sure your dog is within a healthy weight range for its age.
Your dog requires daily exercise. The amount of exercise each dog demands will vary depending on their breed and age; certain breeds have more energy than others while, naturally, younger dogs need more stimulation than older ones. Nonetheless, all dogs require daily walks, and sometimes even run, to remain healthy. Playing with your dog through physical activities, such as catch and swimming, also helps get your dog’s heart rate going. Cardiac exercise through adequate physical stimulation helps to maintain your dog’s heart health.
It goes without saying that to maintain your dog’s health, you should it to to the vet for regular checkups. Annual exams are also a necessity to diagnose and treat any unfortunate problems early before it’s too late. Additionally, these exams help your vet monitor the condition of your canine’s heart.
Dental care should be a top priority for all pet owners, as there is a strong correlation between heart and dental health. Unfortunately, these days, there is a lack of regular dental care provided by the owners to their pets, leading to an increase in heart complications. By brushing your pooch’s teeth and providing it with dental chew toys, you can avoid such diseases and keep it entertained at the same time, hitting two birds with one stone.
The best method of maintaining your dog’s heart health is through parasite prevention. It is important to educate yourself about the causes that may put extra strain on your pup’s heart and take the required actions to reduce this risk. The presence of fleas and ticks on a dog is the cause behind 13% of heart disease cases. Thus, opting for parasite prevention methods is a great way to eliminate the risk of heart disease.
It is important to understand the medical history of your dog’s breed. Unfortunately, some breeds are more susceptible to heart disease than others; Chihuahuas, Boston Terriers, Cocker and Cavalier King Charles spaniels, Great Danes, Dalmatians, Dobermans, Boxers, and Golden Retrievers are among those breeds. By learning about your dog’s breed, you can stay ahead of the game and find effective ways to keep your canine companion healthy.
Keeping your furry playmate happy and healthy should be your top priority. You should regularly monitor your dog’s health, whether or not the breed is known to be at risk of heart disease. Every dog -regardless of its size, health condition, breed, or age- requires a healthy lifestyle. While heart conditions might not always be preventable, there are many courses of action you can take to strengthen your pet’s immunity and keep its heart healthy for as long as possible.