Some dogs require a bit of work to make them the great companion that they should be. To enjoy time with a dog, you must know some things. In this article, you’ll find suggestions that will help you become a better dog owner.

It costs a lot to own a dog. Expect to spend from $700 to as high as $1000 in a year to pay for medical attention, food and other items needed. You should also look into purchasing a good pet health insurance policy to avoid high medical bills.

TIP! There are many pleasures derived from dog ownership, but it is also a serious financial commitment. Dogs require quality food, medical care, and general supplies that can vary in costs.

Consider the situation before allowing a dog to kiss your face. Kisses from dogs are adorable, but they’re a lot less cute when you realize how filthy your dog’s mouth actually is. You don’t know where your dog’s tongue has been, and you’re better off not knowing. There is a belief that the mouth of a dog is cleaner than that of a human. This is not in the least bit true.

Your dog cannot communicate through speech; therefore, you must learn its non-verbal language. If your dog is fearful or shy, do not insist that they interact. This could cause your dog to get scared and to bite. Look for non-verbal cues and follow what the dog is telling you.

Avoid giving your dog scraps from your table. This will make your dog beg all of the time and also will make it not want to eat its regular food as much. Table scraps are also not nutritionally sound for a dog, and this might mean digestive problems, obesity, and other ailments. To prevent temptation, have your dog separated from the area you eat in.

TIP! It’s very important to make sure that your home is safe for a dog. Take the time to tour your home with an eye for safety before you introduce your dog to your home.

Your daily lifestyle should help guide your choice of dog breed. For instance, if you are athletic, you might want an active dog, not a poodle. If you like to stay at home, perhaps you would like a small dog. Both of you are sure to be happier if you choose a good match.

Rawhide is a great alternative to the meat bones that most people feed dogs. Bones can chip and hurt your dog if sharp fragments are ingested. It has been shown that rawhide bones are safe and great for their teeth, so be sure to not give your dog that ham bone next time.

Buy or build a dog house if he is going to be outside for long periods in the winter. Particularly if his feet get wet, extended exposure to extreme temperatures causes stress and can lead to health complications. Keep your dog safe from the elements by providing shelter.

TIP! Try not to force your dog to do new things. If your dog doesn’t like the treat you’ve bought, don’t make him eat it.

Keep trimming the soft hair near the paws of your dog to keep it from matting. Comb the tangles out before you start trimming. Another option is to take your dog to the groomers and ask for this task to be performed.

Certain dogs are prone to medical conditions and make yourself aware of this before selecting a dog. You might be able to prevent some conditions from developing by taking a little extra care of him from the beginning. Talk to your vet about prevention, too.

If you have to leave your dog alone for a whole day, leave a radio or a TV on. Your dog will appreciate the company of the sound, and he will feel more secure. It could be the right trick to help relieve your dog’s anxiety.

TIP! Become acquainted with dog food labels and avoid buying based solely on cost. It will benefit your dog greatly if he is fed food that is nutritious and high in quality.

Help your dog to stay active mentally and help him to exercise enough. Train him to fetch the newspaper and help with other household chore. Doing this will help your pet to feel like a loved and needed family member, and teaching your dog these skills will give it some much needed mental exercise.

Know that an animal doesn’t need too many people telling it what to do when it’s being trained. Not everyone will do things the same way, which can cause confusion. Have one person in charge of their training and let the others reinforce what they’ve learned by respecting their methods and using the same rules.

Make sure your dog gets an annual health check-up. A good vet will be able to easily spot problems with your dog way before you actually see something. An annual check-up for your pet can help to avoid future expense and needless suffering for your dog.

TIP! If you want a dog but don’t know if you can handle the responsibility, start out as a short-term foster home. Many abused and homeless animals are in shelters waiting for adoptions, but there is a lot of overcrowding and many resources are scarce.

There are many different things needed to be the best dog owner you can be. There is more to it than just choosing the cutest puppy. It takes some effort on your part. Take advantage of the things you’ve learned and have a great time with your dog.