Our pets are there for us through good times and bad, and as dog moms, we want to be there for them too. Figuring out how to best parent our dogs can be a struggle, especially when there is conflicting data on everything from dog training to dog kibble. Knowing what’s best for our dogs is tough, and there is no set manual on perfect pet parenting. Below are some simple strategies to help you become the best dog mom “pawssible.”
Daily exercise is a fun way to make sure your pet stays happy and healthy. What’s more, daily walks with your dog promote bonding and socialization. Take 30 minutes out of your day to spend strolling with your fur-baby. Not only will this get you both out of the house, but it can also lower cortisol levels and boost feel-good endorphins for you and Fido too.
As dog moms, we have to deal with our fair share of misbehavior, and while we may not be able to prevent these episodes, we can control how we respond to them.
Adverse punishment like spanking and scolding can interfere with bonding between dogs and their humans. Studies show that this type of punishment increases stress hormone levels in dogs which — over time — can take a physiological and mental toll on the body.
Rather than punishing your dog for misbehavior, use positive reinforcement to reward them for good behavior. Set small attainable goals for your dog, and use gentle praise or treats to reward them when they achieve that goal.
Regular brushing and bathing will help your pup stay healthy and clean, but it has many other benefits too. Grooming stimulates the release of endorphins in the brain, which promotes feelings of well-being and relaxation.
Besides keeping your puppy looking and feeling great, grooming your dog will help build trust. Dogs who undergo regular grooming are more comfortable with being handled, which can be super beneficial if your dog gets injured and you need to inspect them.
Like humans, dogs need regular wellness checkups to make sure their body is functioning normally. Wellness visits allow vets to check for early signs of illness and can make all the difference in treating progressive canine ailments.
Regular checkups will help build rapport between your dog and the vet and make Fido less fearful when the time comes for a sick visit. Your puppy might not like vet visits, but they will thank you in the long run!
One of the best ways to show your pet that you love them is to put them on parasite preventatives. We all know that fleas and ticks are a pain in the fur, but did you know they can also harbor disease and other parasites?
Fleas can transmit tapeworm larvae, which can quickly spread from one furry family member to the next. Ticks can also transmit dangerous diseases that can be passed to humans, namely Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever.
Heartworm preventatives may be expensive, but they’re not as costly as treating your dog for this potentially deadly parasitic infection. Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure — stay on the safe side by giving your pet preventative meds.
Lastly, make yourself a priority. As the saying goes, you can’t pour from an empty cup. Dedicate some part of your day to doing something you enjoy, whether that’s reading or soaking in a hot bath — you’ll have more patience with your fur-babies and be a better dog mom because of it.