Dogs are very sociable and friendly pets, that's why owning one is a rewarding experience with many benefits. To ensure your dog stays happy and healthy, great love and care is needed.
Feeding your Dog
It is vital your dog has the best start in life - and what dogs are fed in their first year is crucial to it's health, growth and adult development. Choose a feed that has been designed by a nutritionist to provide all the nutrients and vitamins required for healthy development, and assists in the prevention of disease. Feeding the right food throughout your dog's life will assist in fighting obesity and other health problems.
Avoid feeding your dog onions, garlic, chocolate, alcohol, bread dough, avocado, macadamia nuts, and raisins. Always keep fresh water available for your dog and change daily.
Your dog must be immunised at an early age in order to help your dog's immune system and fight against diseases. If your dog has not yet been vaccinated, a visit to the vet is essential to begin your dog on a vaccination schedule. We recommend that you keep your dog indoors, and do not take them to any public places until two weeks after the second vaccination at least in order to fully establish their immune system. Your dog should attend a veterinarian once a month for the first three months of their lives. After that, schedule regular veterinary checkups every six months to maintain your dog's health.
As a general rule, dogs should be wormed every 2 weeks until they are 12 weeks old, and then every month until they are 6 months old, and every 3 months thereafter. Worming will provide protection again gastrointestinal parasites (worms), whereby the medication will eliminate any existing worms and help prevent further infestation. If you have any queries consult your friendly Pets Domain staff member or a veterinarian.
Heartworm is a parasite that is spread by mosquitoes and lives in the heart and vessels of dogs, feeding off the blood surrounding it. Heartworm is a serious infestation and is fatal without treatment. Prevention should begin from 12 weeks of age by yearly injections,or monthly tablets, spot-ons or chewables.
Another important part of your dog's health is flea control. Fleas can transmit internal parasites (worms) and cause skin allergies and eczema. Flea treatments are effective for about a month and can be given to your dog as early as 6-8 weeks of age.
To stop unwanted pregnancies, it is advised to desex your dog between 5 and 6 months of age. Desexing also prevents your dog from fighting, roaming, and causing a nuisance to your neighbours. Health risks such as mammary cancer are also reduced when your dog is desexed. In female dogs particularly, uterine infections are reduced and cancer of the prostate gland in male dogs. A tattoo is placed in your dog's left ear once it has been desexed to help identify that your dog has been desexed.
Having your dog microchipped is highly recommended for being able permanently identify your dog in the form of a tiny chip. This chip contains your dog's registration details and is implanted into the skin of your dog. Owner details can be changed through the Central Animal Records. It is ideal to microchip your dog at the same time as desexing. A tattoo is placed on your dog's right ear to identify your cat has been microchipped.