Pet Care: Responsible Pet Ownership
- Spaying or neutering your pet means that your pet's potential offspring won't contribute to the population of unwanted pets and prevent littering. A sterilized pet is much calmer and is no longer driven to roam in search of a mate. Spaying and neutering also reduces the risk of certain health problems, offering you more years with your beloved pet.
- It is cruel to leave your dog on a chain or in a cage 24/7. When you keep your dog continually chained and isolated, it often becomes anxious and aggressive. Studies show that chained dogs are much more likely to bite than unchained dogs. If you have visitors that aren't compatible with dogs, keep your dog in your securely fenced backyard or, if chained or caged for no more than three hours and make sure there is sufficient food, clean water and shade. Dogs need daily exercise and should have freedom to play in a fenced area or to be walked on a leash when taken outdoors.
- Clean water and adequate food provide important nutrients for a healthy life. It sounds obvious, but you'd be surprised how easy it is to forget to check your pet's water, clean her bowl and feed her twice a day.
Ticks and fleas are not only uncomfortable for your pets but can cause illnesses in pets. You must provide immediate relief for your pets. There are several specially formulated dog/cat flea and tick control shampoo and sprays available in pet stores, supermarkets and at veterinary clinics. If your pet is ill, take him to the vet right away.
- Children's attitudes towards animals can predict future behavior. Cruelty to animals is considered a symptom that predicts the development of a psychopath. People who hurt animals may eventually direct violence towards humans. They don't realize that it's wrong and they can't feel the distress that they are causing. Teaching kindness and respect for animals is the first step in teaching children empathy, something they can carry to adulthood
- Pets can be a wonderful addition to any family. However, with ownership comes responsibility. Courtesy and respect are part of being a good neighbor. Put yourself in your neighbor's place to see how your pet's habits affect them. Even the friendliest neighbor may become angry when your dog or cat wanders onto their lawn and soils their yards. You must see to it that your dog does not injure innocent people. Another is making sure your pet doesn't disturb the peace by barking or howling at inappropriate times. It is important to realize that a dog which barks is attempting to communicate something, be it discomfort, loneliness, warning or deterrence.