There’s a lot of winging it among pet owners and it’s not always as straightforward as we’d like it to be. Regardless of how much we try to do our best for our furry family members, none of us is perfect and mistakes will be made. Here are the most common mistakes pet owners make.
Getting a pet impulsively
Adding a pet to your household is a big decision and one that should not be made lightly. It’s important to consider a variety of costs including financial cost, time commitment, exercise, and activity requirements, medical, the occasional destruction of property, and more.
Over or underfeeding
Over or underfeeding your pet can have a seriously negative effect on their health. Most people err on the side of overfeeding which is why pet obesity is on the rise. Obesity in pets can lead to diabetes and inflammatory conditions such as arthritis. In cats, it can even lead to liver failure. Talk to your vet to know what the best diet for your pet is as well as quantities.
Ignoring chronic vomiting
Occasional vomiting in cats who are expelling furballs or dogs who like to eat grass is expected. For this reason, pet owners can erroneously ignore chronic vomiting assuming it’s normal. Vomiting especially after meals should never be ignored. Even if the pet appears well, you should consult a vet to make sure there’s no underlying condition.
Being inconsistent with the rules
It’s important to be consistent about what is and isn’t acceptable behaviour. If you set rules for your pet, follow through on them. Inconsistency and a failure to follow through just confuses your pet and ensure that they don’t follow the rules.
Failing to make your home pet-friendly
Once you bring a pet into the home, it’s important to make the place friendly for them. Make them a nook, a special place for them to relax the same way all the other family members have their own spaces. It doesn’t require complicated and expensive modifications, just a corner with their cushion on it or something like that will do. Make your home safe for them by keeping dangerous items out of reach as well as securing things that can break. Add necessary locks for prying paws and get some mess-free toys if you can.
Skimping on exercise and play
This is especially important for dogs, but all pets benefit from physical activity and play. For cats, it’s enough to have space for them to run around and perhaps even climb. Toys to chase and a laser pointer can also go a long way in helping them have fun, expend pent-up energy, and exercise too. Lack of exercise for dogs can lead to health and behavioural problems. Daily or twice a day walks are a necessity for many breeds.
No veterinarian visits
Most pet owners for a variety of reasons including cost only schedule visits to the vet when there’s a problem. It’s best to have regular check-ups because most animals can hide illness until it’s impossible to hide. Routine check-ups make it possible to detect problems early. They also give the vet a baseline to compare things to when your furry friend is unwell. It’s also important to make sure your pet is up to the necessary vaccinations as well as things like deworming, and flea and tick prevention.
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