Top Ten Things a Dog Owner Should HaveLove, understanding, patience, ... these are all intangible things a dog owner should possess, but there are also some purchases you should expect to make when getting a dog. Here are the top 10 things dog owners should have or expect to buy when bringing a dog into their family.
Hopefully, your furry friend will live a long healthy life, but if something does happen that causes your dog to need medical attention, you'll be grateful you prepared for this emergency. Animal health care can be expensive and nobody wants to be in a situation where you have to determine the dollar value of a family pet.
Typically for under $50, you can have a permanent microchip implanted in your pet that can be used to identify them in the event that they become lost and lose their collar.
According to study published in the Journal of American Veterinary Medical Association, animals with a microchip have a significantly higher chance of being returned to their owners. The study reported that only 22% of lost dogs that entered animal shelters were reunited with their families, but dogs with microchips have a return-to-owner rate of over 52%.
Of course, microchips aren't just for dogs. Cats can and should be microchipped too. According to the same study, less than 2% of cats that entered shelters were reunited with their families. With a microchip, cats are 20 times more likely to be returned to their homes.
A good walking setup will make taking your dog outside less stressful for you and for your dog.
The traditional leash and collar has a number of drawbacks. It allows your dog to pull hard and it is relatively easy for your dog to slip out of. A well fitting no pull harness (as opposed to a basic harness that makes it possible for your dog to pull even harder than they can with a collar) or gentle leader prevents your dog from pulling too hard and provides immediate feedback to help your dog learn proper walking etiquette.
Let's face it, dogs make messes. And the bigger the dog, the bigger the mess. When your four legged friend redistributes the dirt from a potted plant throughout the kitchen or decides the insides of a bean bag chair deserve to be set free, you'll be happy to have the right tool for the job.
If you have a puppy, there will be accidents. If your dog is older and completely housebroken, there may still be the occasional upset stomach or muddy paw prints across the carpet. A good carpet cleaning machine may seem expensive, but it pales in comparison to having to replace carpets that never seem to smell quite right.
As important as it is to get your pets insured and chipped, it's imperative that they have fun. My dogs have spent hours amusing themselves with these, as well as becoming more intelligent, fit and flexible. If you have a dog, you better have a Kong.
Whether you opt for the standard red Kong or the more durable black, it's pretty much a sure thing if your dog likes chewing, it will like this toy. Plus, you can pack it with treats as an extra reward.
My dog eats his food out of these.
A dog door bell is a simple string of bells you hang from your door knob that they can be trained relatively easy to ring when they need to go outside. It's a nice substitute for whining or having your dog damage your door by scratching on it.
For not much money, you can get a collar with your pet's name and a contact number sewn into it. It's a nice alternative to dangling tag that makes noise and can get caught on things. It's also easier to read for the person who finds your dog so they don't have to get their face close to the tag, something that could be upsetting for a dog and potentially dangerous for the good Samaritan.
Unlike a traditional leash, a retractable leash is always taut which helps prevent the leash from getting tangled around your dog. It also helps prevent your dog from being able to let the leash go slack and then build up a head of steam before reaching the end. Finally, a retractable leash is often times much longer than a traditional leash so in suitable areas, you can give your dog much more range while still keeping them on leash.
Even with a quality cleaner, there are some stubborn odors that refuse to leave your carpet. A deodorizer such as Arm & Hammer's Pet Fresh works great in these cases. Sprinkle some of the powder on the affected areas, wait 10 minutes, and vacuum it up.