Many people have pets throughout their lives. If you are a dog owner or may become one, there are some things you need to know. This article is going to give you tips on dogs so that you can be prepared to care for one.

Your home must be dog-proofed. Make sure any area your dog will be in is safe. Make sure all of the medicine is put away and the cleaning supplies are up and safe. Some indoor plants are poisonous, so put them high up.

TIP! Make your home suitable for dogs. You need to look for hazards around your home that your dog might run into.

When training your dog, use hand gestures along with the verbal commands. Your dog may have a better time understanding you when you use manual signals. Experiment with each way and determine what works.

Talk with a vet about which foods are good for dogs and which ought to be avoided. If your puppy is very young, it might not be ready to consume specific brands, and feeding them to your pup can result in sickness. Use care when feeding your dog.

If you are not sure how often you should feed your dog, ask your vet. While some people follow the direction on the back of the dog food packaging, they are sometimes incorrect and may make your dog overweight. Your vet will give you personalized advice.

TIP! If you have prescription or over-the-counter medication in the house, make sure that your dog does not have access to it. Swallowing even one pill can end very badly, with a sick or dying dog.

Don’t go for the cheap stuff when you buy dog food. The cheaper brands actually contain a lot of preservatives, additives and other ingredients that can compromise your dog’s health. Check with animal advocacy groups or consumer reviews to find the best dog foods that are recommended by professionals. Better food will be very beneficial to your dog.

Make sure that your dog’s nails are trimmed weekly. If they start to curl, your dog may feel a lot of pain. You can do this yourself using a pair of dog clippers from the pet store. Can’t hack it? Take them to the groomer instead.

When it is time to buy dog food, avoid buying the cheapest brand. Long-term, the dog will do much better with nutritious, good quality food. Sure, it’s more expensive. But, isn’t your pet worth it?

TIP! When training a dog, practice in the yard or your home. Avoid training your dog where many people are present.

When you get a new dog, set up an appointment for him at the vet. In fact, do it the same day as you bring the pet home so you don’t forget. Your dog will get a vaccination schedule and a checkup. You should also have your dog neutered or spayed to cut down on pet overpopulation.

To prevent the hair around a dog’s paws from matting, you should keep it trimmed. You should use a comb to straighten out the hair a bit before trying to trim it. If you’re too scared, take him to the groomer instead.

Stimulate your dog mentally by giving him exercise and physical activity. Teach your dog to retrieve the newspaper or perform chores in your home. Your dog will feel useful and like a contributing piece of the family, during the process of sharpening his mental capacity.

TIP! Talk to your vet about your dog’s food portions. Even though many people stick to the label on the can or package of the dog’s food, sometimes these guidelines might not work for the type of dog that you have.

Stay politically active for the sake of your dog. Watch for local legislation that may be passing through the system, restricting and regulating dog owner’s behavior and rights. These regulations often exist because of bad behaviors from a few dogs of a certain breed. Take action and speak up on behalf of your pet by calling or emailing local officials.

Make sure you make and keep yearly vet appointments for your dog. From thyroid issues to heartworm, your vet can find something wrong which isn’t visible to the naked eye. An annual physical can save your dog’s life.

It is a common occurrence for a dog to get a cut after stepping on glass or other debris. If your dog has a tiny cut, use an antiseptic to wash it with and then bandage the area. If the cut continues to bleed, go to an emergency veterinary hospital.

TIP! Always teach your dog to walk properly on a leash. He should stay by your side, not in front of or behind you, and respond to the command “heel”.

Are you aware that feeding your dog vitamins can be dangerous? If your dog already has a good diet, avoid giving him supplements. Excessive amounts of some vitamins can harm the bones, joints and blood vessels. Speak with the vet before giving your dog any vitamins.

When thinking over what you’re dog is eating, you have to look over their diet carefully. Foods high in calories are fine for puppies who are growing. But, adults dogs who eat these foods tend to gain weight, leading to health issues.

Try to always be firm. Dog owners often feel that it is no big deal to sneak foods to their pets or allow them to destroy certain toys. The cuter the dog, the greater the temptation to bend the rules! If you’re firm, you won’t have these accidents. For instance, giving scraps to a dog may seem harmless, but if you keep doing it, the dog may think it is fine to jump on a table and take a whole course.

TIP! Fostering a dog teaches you about the responsibilities of dog ownership. The shelters are full of homeless pups and lack many resources because of the overcrowding.

Socializing your dog with other dogs is essential when you get to bring a puppy into your home. Taking the dog to the groomer, the dog park and on doggie play dates is a great way to socialize your do to other dogs.

Now that you’ve come to the end of this article, you know what it takes to take care of your dog. When you use these tips, you’ll have no problems in the future. Use the tips from this article and find other sources you can use to learn more about dogs.