Children and Dog

Little caretakers for the tailwaggers

Kids and dogs make a great team. The bonding is strong, the love infectious and the joy knows no bounds. Here’s how kids’ can care for furry friends.

Spending time with pets helps in increasing mutual trust and building the human-animal bond. Time spent together helps your kids and their four-legged friend comprehend each other’s thoughts, moods, gestures and feelings better. Even as little as 20-30 additional minutes a day can be very beneficial to their and their fur pal’s well being, and it doesn’t have to take a lot of planning.

  • Monday–Mental stimulation for the pet
    Brain stimulation is very important in keeping your dog happy and healthy. Remember, bored dogs Children and Dogcause problems. If you don’t keep your dog’s mind stimulated, chances are that he’ll find activities to stimulate his mind himself, which you may not like! Let your kid teach him a new trick or command. Of course, one day is not enough for most dogs to grasp a trick, but you can start today and build on it throughout the week. Teach your kid how to do it and let him make his practice every day. Let both of them enjoy during the session.
  • Tuesday–Truly tailwagger!
    Take a trip to a dog park or some other dog-friendly places. While your kids will have fun with other children and pets, let your pet make new friends and socialise with his butt sniffing buddies! Sit back and watch those tails wag away to glory!
  • Wednesday–Well-being is wealth
    Fix up a date with the dog groomer. Let your kid accompany him and see how his hair and nails get clipped. Let him take clues on how to brush his hair, clean his ears and brush his teeth. You can also groom him at home and let your kid do stuff like brushing his coat and talking to him while you groom him.
  • Thursday–Trip to the grocery store
    Your household chores may seem mundane to you, but your kids and furry babies will love the chance to get out of the house and accompany you. New places mean new smells, which means a trip to doggie heaven!
  • Friday–Friends and family time
    If your kids’ friends like dogs, call them home.
    Let the kids and pooch mingle together. Just keep an eye that both the kids and pooch are safe.
  • Saturday–Scrumpti-drool-ious day!
    “Yummy in my tummy!”
    Whether you feed your dog commercial kibble or homemade food rest of the week, today is his day for a gourmet meal. Master chef or clueless in the kitchen, go ahead and explore your creative side. Team up with your child and prepare a gourmet meal. Keep a lookout for delicious and nutritious pooch recipes and pamper your ball of fur.
  • Sunday– Snooze away…
    Kids love to sleep on Sundays. Let your pooch snuggle in and cuddle up with them. Teach them a lazy belly rub and you will have the happiest dog in the world. Let your kids talk to your fur baby just a little every day. Animals may not understand their words but they do understand their tone and body language. Let them build a bond, they will cherish for their lifetime.

Every dog needs daily exercise, training and some one-on-one time with the humans in the family. Making some extra time just takes a few changes in your daily schedule. A little creativity on your part can go a long way towards meeting those needs. You will come to find it’s well worth it in the long run.

Care for aging tailwaggers!

Wagging tails, sparkling eyes, smiling face… keep your pooch happy, even in his aging years. Here are a few tips to ensure that your pooch lives a healthy and long life in his golden years.

Dogs begin to show signs of aging between 6 and 13 years. Similar to aging humans, an older pet may experience hearing loss, vision loss, arthritis, liver or kidney disease, heart disease, diabetes, hormonal imbalances, etc. Regular visit to the veterinarian can detect these and be treated. The good news is with veterinary medical progress in India, your pet can live better into their geriatric years.

An older dog needs special care and attention to live a long healthy life, which include:

  • Exercise your older pet moderately every day. Try not to over do it.
  • Feed high-quality dog food specific to his senior dietary needs.
  • Be consistent with his schedule.
  • Pet and cuddle your dog frequently.
  • Groom him regularly, checking for lumps and bumps.
  • Keep your dog at a good weight. Suffering from obesity makes your older dog more susceptible to health problems. And this is especially important when he reaches the golden years. Since your dog’s activity level will taper off, you may want to engage in some gentle play to keep him healthy.
  • Maintain a health record for your senior pet.
  • It is important to keep a pet with joint pain from becoming overweight. Carrying extra weight puts more stress on joints that are already inflamed. If the pet is overweight at the time of an arthritis diagnosis, you should discuss a weight loss plan with your pet’s doctor.
  • One of the most effective steps you can take as guardian to a pet with arthritis or other joint pain is to provide some extra comforts.
  • While your senior dog still has control over his muscles and joints, make sure he gets the exercise he needs. Take him to daily walks and make sure he gets his heart rate up to the necessary level for optimal health.
  • Senior dogs’ bones become more fragile, and their cartilage becomes worn. They are also more likely to experience loss of muscle. Make sure your dog stays mobile as long as possible and eats plenty of protein and calcium for strong bones and muscles.
  • When dogs get older, their nutritional needs change. Since they’re getting less activity, their calorie needs may decrease. And they have unique needs that are different from younger dogs.
  • Watch your senior pet closely, check his eyes to make sure they are properly cared for.
  • Maintain your senior dog’s mind, keeping his mind healthy is as important as anything else. Play with your dog, and talk with your dog to keep your dog’s mind functioning well.
  • Take your older dog to the vet often, because older dogs can be more prone to health issues, this can help identify problems.

(Sanjay Jaiswal is GM at Petcare).