A dog needless to say, becomes an inextricable and inseparable part of your family and needs to be taken care of like just another family member. A young pup needs to be treated like a newborn in the family whereas an old dog craves the respect and treatment given to the family’s geriatrics. Thus it goes without saying that a lack of proper daily care leaves your pet depressed, neglected, and often in a cantankerous mood. Play with and nurture your dog The first step is the provision of a clean, hygienic, and protected environment for the dog, particularly when it’s a pup. An unsheltered and uncared pup will inevitably grow into a rebellious and unruly dog. Remember, as you keep your family members protected from the elements at any cost, so you must for your dog also. Fresh water must be available at all times because dogs need hydration for energy, steady growth, and wonderful health. So ensure that the water bowl is always kept clean and filled with potable water in adequate quantities. They should have access to fresh water every day. The right food Obesity in dogs is common and this happens mostly because of the wrong diet given to pets. The dog’s alimentary system is different from that of humans and feeding the dog from the table is a strict no-no, no matter how much he begs. They have their place of eating and the kitchen table should not be one of them. Consult your vet and draw up a proper diet plan based on the dog’s age, size, activity level, and breed. Keep healthy treats for feeding in between meals like iron-rich dog biscuits and calcium-laden animal foods. A bi-annual veterinary checkup is also most essential to vaccinate, deworm, and control external parasites. Make sure that your pet is properly vaccinated against canine distemper, rabies, and other diseases which can be prevented. Any sudden change in behavior or lack of appetite and thirst should be reported to the vet immediately for appropriate action. It’s also advisable not to treat the pet yourself first and then rush to the vet when things spin out of control. By that time, it may be too late. All quadrupled pets need their daily dose of exercise, especially dogs. This calls for the provision of adequate exercising opportunities in parks, backyards, or walking down your street. No, the office where you work is not the place to walk your dog! It helps dogs to be in shape, prolongs their lifespan and improves their attitude, particularly towards strangers. Without exercise, a dog is most likely to turn lazy and obese. However, once the exercising is over, let it rest for a while and also clean out its paws for dirt and debris that may cause infections later. Dogs don’t need sweets! The dog’s dental care too, is extremely important. Certain breeds are highly prone to dental and gum diseases, with serious implications. Regular mouth washing and brushing with special dog toothbrushes may be done daily to maintain oral hygiene. Also refrain from offering too many sweets and confectionaries to dogs as it erodes their teeth and may even cause diabetes. Groom and trim their nails regularly though if they run around enough, that will take care of itself. Dogs with long coats are prone to developing ice balls and matts in their coats. Brush the coat with a medium to soft brush every day to untangle it. Regular brushing also leaves the coat glossy and healthy and prevents excessive shedding. Elderly dogs also suffer from overgrown nails, if they cannot run around like they used to, which make walking difficult and painful. Take them to the vet to get their nails cut. Last but not least, spend time with your dog and treat it like a favorite companion. Dogs detest loneliness because they are basically social creatures and lack of communication leads to development of unsocial behavioral patterns. If you do not have time for the dog, perhaps you should not have bought it. Watching TV too much rather than walking your dog is not the right way to go, for example.