Nothing can break your heart more than a sick dog. He is listless, depressed, in pain and he looks bad—a far cry from the healthy and adorable pet we know and love. Unlike us where we can do something if we’re sick—our pets do not know what is wrong with them. They just feel bad and they don’t know how to make it right.
Avoid having a sick dog by making sure that your dog is as healthy as possible and you can do this with a good diet, regular exercise and periodic check-up. Sure our dogs may look pretty strong and hardy, but without a good foundation of health—his system will eventually break down in the years to come. The goal is not just to add quantity to his years, but quality as well.
What makes a good diet? The most recommended food is the BARF diet (Bones and Raw Food or Biologically Appropriate Raw Food). While many people are not comfortable with feeding their dog uncooked meat, rest assured that this is not harmful to the dog at all. They have a highly acidic system and a short digestive tract which make their insides a very hostile environment to bacteria and parasites.
On the contrary, raw food retain all the natural vitamins and minerals that they need to boost their immune system. Vegetables and fruits should also be added, although fruits are better given as treats and snacks—mixing them with meals can sometimes cause indigestion.
If you cannot provide a raw and natural diet, look for premium health food that do not compromise your dog’s health. Look for food made with human grade ingredients, mild processing methods and lack of the use of preservatives and chemicals. This may mean a few extra dollars on your part, but it is more worth it in the long run because you will have a healthier and happier dog.
Exercise is also critical to dogs because obese dogs are prone to more dog diseases as well. Aside from monitoring the calorie intake of your dog, engage him in light exercise every day—depending on your dog, his weight, age and current health status. Exercise also promotes cardiac and circulatory health, just make sure to avoid extreme sports that are hard on his bones and joints.
If your dog is in the throes of some disease, make it a point to give him a lot of fresh, clean water to cleanse his system from the toxins in his body. A good index of a sick dog is dehydration so be wary if he is always peeing or vomiting without good reason. If this happens (or any unusual change of behaviour or appearance for that matter), take him to the vet for a complete examination.
Vet check-ups have been known to save the lives of dogs. Think about it, if you are able to detect your dog’s sickness early on, you have more options on how to treat your dog and indeed, you have a higher chance of getting him all better. Ask about vaccinations, vitamins and supplements that can help improve your dog’s condition.
You don’t have to be sad anymore if you have a sick dog. Your dog is an important part of your family, of your life — invest in his health today and reap the rewards of a happy dog tomorrow. He is worth it.