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Common Mistakes Dog Owners Make

By Edited Sep 22, 2015 1 4

Dog are wonderful animals and make great pets.  They will require  your time and attention every day.  It's  a responsibility  no one should take lightly.  

Here are some common mistakes dog owners make.  If you are thinking of adopting a pet, knowing these things ahead of time should make it easier for you.  If you already have a dog and are having a problem it may help to know how to correct it.  

Adorable Dog

Almost everyone loves to see a cute dog.  Puppies are particularly adorable.  However, adopting one is a decision that should never be made on impulse.  A puppy or adult dog should not be purchased as a gift for someone else either.  I mean think about it..... would you want to be presented with an animal that was going to be dependent on you for food and care, even if you loved animals?  The decision to adopt a pet should be made by the individual, along with anyone who may be living in your home.  

Another common mistake dog owners make is not doing any research ahead of time to determine which breed would be most suitable for their household.  You should know the pet's temperament, grooming needs, and potential health problems particular to the breed.  

The dog's disposition is particularly important if you have kids.  Not all dogs like children, so you will want to  choose a pet that gets along well with everyone in the family.  Seniors may want a dog that is not too energetic.  A very active pet needs owners who can take him or her for runs or other activities that will burn off energy.  

Grooming is another thing to consider.  Some canines only need the occasional brushing and bathing.  Others need to have their coats trimmed every few weeks.  Dogs also need to have their nails trimmed from time to time.

The Bishon Frise is one example of a dog that makes a wonderful pet, but is time consuming as far as grooming requirements are concerned.  

Some people are good at grooming animals, and others prefer to let someone else do it for them.  I have looked after my dogs,  but I've never had one that required the coat to be trimmed regularly.  

You also should be aware of potential ailments a certain breed is more susceptible to.  Golden Retrievers have a higher risk of developing hip dysplasia than other types of canines.  This is just one example of a potential health issue you should be aware of, because some conditions can be very expensive to treat.  

Adorable Puppy

Every dog needs exercise.  The pet needs it for optimal health and to prevent boredom and obesity.  

Some dogs need a lot more exercise and activity than others.  Labradors and Golden Retrievers are particularly high energy and love to run outdoors.  These are not pets who are suitable for couch potatoes.  On the other hand, if having a dog will motivate you to exercise yourself, you both can benefit.  

If the pet does not get exercised daily he or she may develop unwanted behaviors.  Chewing, digging and whining are some examples of conduct that can occur due to boredom or frustration.  

The pet is more likely to stay healthy and happy with regular exercise.  Many people love to play with their pets as it is a fun activity for both the dog and owner.  It can help everyone in the family to bond with the animal. 

Small dogs will enjoy having toys to play with in the house.  It is not practical or desirable to let larger dogs play in the house; and it should not even be necessary if the pet is taken outdoors each day for walking, running, playing fetch and other activities.  

Cocker Spaniel

Another common mistake dog owners make is leaving the pet alone for extended periods of time.  Dogs are social animals and become upset if they are alone too long.  

Some canines develop separation anxiety and may chew at furniture or show other destructive behavior.  

If your home is typically empty all day during the week, it might be better to think of a different animal to adopt.  Cats are usually good choices for people who live alone and are working during the day.  

There are doggie day cares where the pet will be looked after and have companionship while you are not home, but this of course can cost a lot of money.  These didn't exist all that long ago, but now there are some canine owners who depend on them to keep the dog busy while they are working.  A day care  can be a good solution if you can afford it.  

Also some breeds are "one person" dogs.  They may be upset when the individual leaves, even of others remain home.  This is different from most canines, who will bond with everyone in a house, although there may be one person the pet is particularly attached to.  

Diet and Oral Care for Dogs

Some pet owners do not read labels on food packages, or give much consideration to what they are feeding their pet.  A lot of commercial dog foods are very poor quality.  Some foods contain artificial flavors, colors, and other potentially harmful ingredients.  

If we eat a junk food diet, we are more likely to develop such things as heart disease, diabetes and other conditions.  This is also true of dogs.  They develop a lot of the same health problems that humans do. 

To find a high quality food, check the ingredients on the label.  The main ingredient should be meat.  Everything contained in the food should be natural and contain no chemicals.  If you can't pronounce the ingredient, you probably should not be feeding it to your pet.  

It is not a good idea to give a pet table scraps.  Good quality dog foods provide the animal with all necessary nutrition.  Adding human food to the diet can cause the pet to become overweight.  Also the animal may start to beg for food while you are eating your meal, which can be annoying, particularly if you have company.  

Dogs also need to have their teeth cleaned.  Otherwise they can develop cavities and gum disease.  The pet's breath will eventually be bad too.   We don't feel comfortable when our teeth need cleaning, and I'm sure it's the same with our pets.  

Regular teeth brushing will keep them in good condition and reduce the chance of having to take the animal to a vet for expensive treatment.  In addition, there are food brands and treats targeted for dental health that will help reduce plaque and avoid problems.  

Maltese Puppy

Some dogs are easier to train than others.  It depends on the canine's intelligence as well as the temperament.  However, almost every dog wants to please their owner.  It takes time and patience to teach a dog desirable behavior, and to let the pet know what actions are undesirable.

Some people make the mistake of punishing an animal when disobedience or unwanted behavior occurs.  This seldom works because the pet may not understand the reason for the punishment.  It can make the animal anxious and even afraid of the person doing the discipline.

The most effective way to train a dog is to reward good behavior.  This can be with lavish praise, petting, and providing treats.  Canines respond well to positive reinforcement.  Of course, the earlier you start the animal on a training program the easier it will be.  

These are common mistakes  dog owners make.  I've had many dogs over the years and had to learn these tips these myself.  Owning a dog is usually a wonderful experience and the pet is considered another member of the family.  

Cute Labrador Puppy


Feb 10, 2015 2:31am
Great tips throughout your article, enjoyed the read. I especially agree with your point about not giving a dog to someone as a gift, it really is better for someone to choose their own dog.

Before we adopted, we did research and took our time deciding. We found a great match at a local shelter, while many of the dogs were barking or growling at the kids, she bounced up and down behind the fence and we decided to take her for a walk. As soon as they let her out, she licked my little one immediately. We knew right then and there she would be coming home with us.
Feb 10, 2015 9:15am
I don't know why someone would think giving a pet to someone is a good idea. I'm sure they mean well but it's not a good thing. Thanks for reading and commenting.
Feb 20, 2015 5:33am
Real valuable advice given in your article………………..I find that people need to take a good look at their lifestyle and choose the right pet/dog that would fit into it. Taking on a dog is a full time affair which requires a certain amount of discipline, routine from the owners.

I'll look forward to reading more articles from you, thanks
Feb 20, 2015 7:09am
Yes owning a dog does require discipline. It's a responsibility everyone should take seriously. Thanks for reading.
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  1. "Ten Steps To Your Dogs Dental Health." ASPCA. 9/02/2015 <Web >
  2. "Nail Care." ASPCA. 9/02/2015 <Web >

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