The domestication of dogs began thousands and thousands of years ago. Humans and dogs are meant to interact and everyone should be glad. It is your job, though, to take proper care of your pup. Here are a few ways you can make sure your dog is happy and healthy.

Just as you need an annual physical exam, dogs do as well. Because your dog can’t speak with you, you may have trouble knowing when your dog is feeling pain like if it has arthritis. Getting your dog checked up on annually will allow you to know if there are any problems.

TIP! Be sure to have your pet spayed or neutered. Research shows that doing this can make your animal live longer and reduce their cancer risks.

To improve the dog training process, try using hand signals in addition to verbal commands. Using hand gestures can help your dog to recognize commands quicker. Not every dog will learn the same, so try different techniques with your dog.

Purchase a dog that can keep up with your lifestyle. For example, if you live an active lifestyle it is probably best for you to find an active dog instead of a little dog. If you much prefer to be at home, a small dog that enjoys a lot of inside time is an ideal choice. When you match your traits and the traits of your pet, you will both be happy.

Whenever your dog performs a good action, such as sitting or staying, give it praise and rewards. Let a dog know that their behavior is what you wish to see. It also reinforces the idea that they will receive attention if they behave as you want them to.

TIP! If you are on any kind of medication, you should ensure your dog never gains access to it. If your dog has access to these pills, there can be fatal consequences.

Do not force your dog to do anything. If your dog is not interested in a treat, do not force your pet to eat it. Not all dogs like the same things.

If you are going to get a dog from the shelter, make a appointment with the vet. They may be carrying some sort of illness that they picked up at the shelter. Make sure the new puppy gets their required shots before going home.

Take your new dog to a vet. This is one of the first things you should do. Your vet will provide a full check up and establish vaccination dates. Remember that there is a tremendous dog overpopulation problem, so you should have your dog spayed/neutered.

TIP! Be wary about certain flea treatments to use for your dog. A lot of them can cause cancer in children.

If you wish to get a dog, but don’t know if you can commit to it, try getting a foster dog. A lot of abused and homeless animals are in shelters waiting, but resources are slim. Lend a hand by fostering a dog, and determine if it is a good fit for you and your family.

If your dog seems unhappy and is alone a lot, consider getting a second dog. Dogs are pack animals by their very nature and usually prefer the company of their own kind. Choose another dog whose energy level and temperament matches your dog’s, and you should have a good match.

It is not uncommon for dogs to get cuts on their paws from stepping on pieces of glass and debris. Clean any small cuts on your dog with antiseptic, and bandage the area. If the cut seems like it’s too deep, then head off to see the vet.

TIP! Speak with your vet about the amount of food you should be feeding your dog each day. Dog food packages provide guidelines, but they can be wrong for your particular pet and lead to obesity.

If you already have a dog and want to get another one, allow your existing dog to meet the new one before you make your final decision. While dogs are naturally social, some find it easier to get along with newcomers than others. Finding dogs that like each other will save you headache and heartache in the long run.

Some vitamins can be bad for your dog’s health. As long as your dog has a good diet, he or she needs no extra vitamin supplements. Too much of some vitamins can cause injury to the bones, joints and blood vessels. Speak with a vet before starting your dog’s vitamin regimen.

You should not always use the same rewards when training your dog. Try to figure out what your dog needs to do good. If food is what drives your dog, use small, hot dog pieces as reward. If your dog is toy driven, short games can be a great reward. Some dogs just like to be shown attention as a reward.

TIP! Offer rawhide rather than actual meat bones. Rawhide limits the danger when your dog is chewing.

Ensure you regularly wash water and food bowls. Just like you, your dog doesn’t want to use food and water bowls that are dirty. You should wash your dog bowls every day.

Even if your life is hectic, your dog needs to be walked daily. Not only does your pet need the exercise, but walks give your canine friend a chance to see new things and possibly interact with new people. This is very imperative for your dog’s health.

Take great care of your dog. This process isn’t too difficult if you’re aware of what goes into it, so use what you have read here to help. Use the tips, and you will find your dog is much happier.