dog6.jpg (26267 bytes)CARING FOR A DOG

Dog owners are responsible for feeding, housebreaking, and cleaning their pets. They should also oversee the health of their dogs. It's best to consult a veterinarian at the first sign of a dog ailment.

A dog can be fed either the dry meal, biscuit, semimoist and cellophane-wrapped, or canned type of dog food. Whichever type is selected must contain the carbohydrates, fats, proteins, minerals, and vitamins essential for the animal's well-being. As a rule, the cost of feeding a large dog can be kept low by giving it the inexpensive dry meal type.

A puppy should be housebroken as soon as possible. When the puppy takes its first water or food, note how long it takes for the puppy to urinate or defecate. When you discover the schedule, take the pup outside when the prescribed time has elapsed after feeding or drinking. Soon, the puppy will associate the outdoors with toilet function and will no longer soil the house or the newspapers that have been spread around its living area.

Young puppies should not be excessively groomed. A daily brushing with a soft brush is sufficient to remove surface dust and dirt. Some authorities believe that to conserve its natural skin oils a pup should not be completely bathed until its first birthday. Mud and deep dirt in its coat, however, can be removed with a damp, warm washrag. Afterward, the puppy should be completely dried with a rough towel. A dog can then have a complete bath when it is old enough, but it must be kept in the house until thoroughly dry, especially during winter. Dog nails should be trimmed periodically. Cut only the transparent part of the nail past the foot pads. Close clipping can cut into the "quick"--the portion of nail that has nerves and blood vessels--and hurt the animal. Special clippers can be purchased for trimming dog nails.

Main Page - Anatomy of the Dog - Life History of the Dog - Breeds of Dogs - Choosing a Dog - Canine Pests & Diseases

Training a Dog - Evolution of the Dog - The Partnership of Dog & Human - Dog Terms - Some Noteworthy Dogs in History