Maybe you are currently thinking about becoming a puppy owner for the first time in your life. Maybe you already own a puppy or an adult dog and just want to double check, if you are already doing all the good stuff. Either way, this post is intended to provide you with information on the basics of a happy and healthy dog – Bull Terriers included, because apparently they are dogs as well, although sometimes they behave more like little clowns. 🙂
The basic principles of a balanced nutrition, proper care, hygiene and exercise apply to any dog, no matter the breed.
In addition, there are often also some breed specific aspects to consider. But for now I will mainly cover information that applies to dogs in general.
I have prepared a cartoon style chart for you that shows the essentials of the happy and healthy dog. I am giving away the printing file for this poster for free. Contact me, if you want to have the file.
Dogs have different grooming needs regarding their coats, depending on the breed. Long haired breeds usually need brushing and sometimes even cutting, while the short haired breeds, such as Bull Terriers are comparatively low-maintenance with their coats.
However, there are some things in dog grooming every dog benefits from, when it comes to hygiene and body care:
Nail clipping, dental care, bathing and ear cleaning are important to keep your dog happy and healthy.
Some dogs need to get their nails clipped frequently. If you do it yourself make sure to use the right tools.
The best tool I know is a nail clipper especially made for dogs.
An obedience trained and well socialized dog is usually not only easier to handle and more pleasant to live with than an untrained dog. Obedience training is also a great help for your dog to develop positive routines, get to know you better, understand his position within the family and act accordingly.
Obedience training helps your dog to become more secure and confident and prevents him from constant challenging you or question his position time and again.
Therefore it’s true to state that obedience training is helpful for EVERYONE – you as the owner, your family, your dog and even strangers and other dogs or animals you may encounter during the life of your dog. I myself consider it mandatory for EVERY dog owner. And in my opinion it does not depend on the size of a dog.
The proper dog vaccinations and parasite control depends a lot on the area you live in with your pet. Areas with very different seasons have different requirements than areas with very warm weather year round, for example. Therefore, if you are planning a vacation with your dog or moving to an area with a very different climate than the one you have lived before, it can be a wise decision to ask your vet, if any changes to your dog’s current vaccination and parasite control schedule are advisable.
In many countries several vaccinations are required by law. For example, all states of the U.S. have their own regulations due to rabies vaccination for dogs.
Why add supplements for dogs when feeding an already balanced manufactured food, such as kibble or canned dog food, you may be asking yourself.
While many manufacturers promise “balanced” and “complete” on the package, the truth is that many processed pet foods have a very general and basic formula. As a result it is simply not possible to really meet ALL of your dog’s needs by just feeding this food.
Some processed foods can even cause deficiencies, if fed solely over years and not alternated with other foods or supplemented with nutrients.
Compared to humans some of those dog foods have the same level of quality as if you were eating nothing but fast food all your life.
Dog breeds are usually distinguished by different characteristics. One of those characteristics is their energy level.
While there are indeed some dog with low energy levels, I would say MOST dogs really need some exercise. Bull Terriers, for example, especially when young, often have pretty high energy levels and therefore need quite an amount of attention and exercise.
Not every kind of exercise is suited for any dog.
Some dogs will be completely happy with walks and should not be encouraged to perform certain exercises, such as excessive jumping, long-distance running etc. -because of their physiognomy. That does not mean these dogs just do not need exercise. It just means that other exercises may be more appropriate for them.
Not only the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. The way to a dog’s heart goes the same way with healthy dog treats and balanced nutrition. I sometimes wonder when I watch many people treating their dogs generously with pieces as big as half a meal. When doing dog training you really learn to divide your treats, because otherwise you will be feeding your dog fat in no time.
There’s nothing wrong with feeding treats, as long as they do not add calories in excessive amounts or if they are just being “burned” by some additional exercise.
Dogs have quite sensitive tastebuds. So, small treats even for big dogs are really doing the trick. This way they add less calories to the dog’s daily calorie intake.
Still, if you are using a lot of treats, for example in dog training, it’s not the worst idea to really count the amount of treats into your dog’s daily calorie intake.