Dogs bring people joy, companionship and unconditional love. Their owners must provide them with food, entertainment, medical care and attention. Together, owner and dog make each other’s lives complete. If you already own a dog or are planning on adopting one, you have to understand what lies ahead. This article will guide you through some tips to make dog ownership easier and better for both parties.

If you are looking for a great family pet, but are on a budget, consider rescuing an animal.You can get one at a local shelter for minimal costs and the dog will come with a clean bill of health and all his shots. If you are interested in a specific breed, contact a rescue group specializing in only those pooches.

Never allow your dog to be alone with small children, no matter how much you trust his temperament. Many little kids have been attacked by family dogs who have otherwise never demonstrated a tendency towards violence. Sleeping dogs may be woken by a toddler and react negatively or some other offense is committed against the animal that sets him off.

Pet-proof your home before bringing a dog into it, just as you would for a crawling toddler. You need to move anything toxic to a higher shelf and consider the danger that plants may pose if nibbled by your dog. Remember that anti-freeze is deadly and that leaving things like pennies or crayons on floors can pose a choking hazard to curious pups.

Make sure you have the correct dog supplies. Before bringing your dog home for the first time, be sure that you are equipped with the right supplies. Every dog needs a good sized food and water bowl, a collar and leash, toys, and a comfy place to sleep. Also, remember to purchase an identification tag immediately.

Be sure your dog is physically active. Dogs need game time and regular exercise to keep them mentally and physically healthy and happy. You will enjoy the time you spend doing these things with your dog as well. Not only will your canine buddy get the stimulation required for staying healthy, the two of you will bond much more closely.

If you do not have any ear cleaner solution on hand, you can use a baby wipe instead. Simply wrap it around the tip of your finger and wipe the inside of the ear’s surface. Only go as far as your finger can easily fit. Do not use Q-tips as they can injure the ear.

Humane Society

Put your dog through obedience training. A well-trained dog is a joy to live with for both you and them. Teaching them simple commands like “Come,” “Heel,” “Sit,” and “Stay” can help curb or prevent troublesome behaviors in no time. You can either teach them yourself, or you can find out about obedience courses by contacting the SPCA or the local humane society for class recommendations.

When you are enjoying your dog’s companionship, you will be so happy you read this article and began to use the advice you read. Protecting and loving your dog begins with taking the time to learn all you can, and ends with putting that knowledge to use. Start today, for your dog’s sake!