The responsibilities of pet owners can be pretty broad and diverse, but most people would agree with the assessment that, at a minimum, you are responsible for keeping your pets safe and healthy. But what are you really doing, proactively, to do that? You can react to when they are injured or ill, making sure they get a vet’s care as soon as possible but is that enough? Here are a few steps you might want to consider taking.
Take good care of their general health
If you want to reduce their risk of being badly affected by illness or injury, then making sure that they are in good health, in general, is important. This means making sure that you take them on exercises regularly, feeding them nutritious food and managing their portions, visiting the vet to make sure they have all of the vaccinations and anti-pest treatments they need, and using medication appropriately. Invest the time necessary to keep your pets disease-free and, even if they do catch sometimes, they will be in better general health so it may not affect them as badly.
Know how to identify problems
Pet behavior can sometimes be puzzling. Sometimes, you might not be aware of when something is just a little quirk in their behavior or when they are exhibiting symptoms of something bad. Become familiar with the signs that your pet may need to see a vet, which can include things like isolating themselves, not eating, drinking excessive amounts of water, having trouble with going to the bathroom (or having urine or feces that is very different in appearance texture), as well as visual changes in their eyes or gums.
Be able to treat them immediately
When it comes to injuries, getting your pet to the vet is going to be a priority. However, if you are able to provide urgent care there on the spot, then you might be able to drastically change outcomes. Being able to stop bleeding and dress wounds can help you take care of your pet much better following an injury, and you can take a test now that helps you learn the first aid necessary to do so. If you’re able to competently and confidently handle first aid, then you can make sure that you don’t have to wait to see the vet to improve your pet’s condition.
Be ready for emergencies
Of course, there are going to be situations that you can’t handle, yourself. The better prepared you are for them, the more effectively you might be able to handle them. First of all, make sure your vet handles emergency visits. Ensure that your vet’s name, address, and phone numbers are kept on hand or close to hand, such as on your address book or in your phone. Call your vet ahead of time when you’re taking your pet to see them and make sure to follow their instructions on what care or precautions you can take before seeing them.
Whether or not you’re able to give your pets the care they require can sometimes come down to which skills and resources you’ve taken the time to prepare. Hopefully, the tips above can help you see that.