Step Seven: Final Considerations
Hide harmful Stuff
There's a long list of plants that could be potentially toxic to your pet, including tulips, lillies, and chrysanthemums, so make sure you refer to this list ( "Animal Poison Control") when puppy-proofing your home!
Be wary of lawn and gardening products as well. Insecticides and mulch can be harmful to your pup, too.
Avocado, grapes, chocolate, garlic, and onions are all on the list of foods that are hazardous to your pet.
Laundry detergent can be harmful to your dog, especially the pods that can burst and get into their eyes, causing ulcers and infections like conjunctivitis.
Stow these away in a safe place and watch what your pup gets into!
Other hazardous household items include fabric softener sheets, antifreeze, and mothballs.
Be sure to refer to the full list of hazardous items to make sure your home is totally puppy-proof!
Always check your buddy for fleas and ticks, especially during the warm months! There are flea and tick prevention options as well, so be sure to discuss those with your vet.
Know that heartworm is a parasite that lives in the heart, transmitted from animal to animal by mosquito. Heartworm infections can be fatal, so be sure to discuss with your vet heartworm prevention options. There is a prevention pill that can be given once a month, which will protect your pet from infection.
Be sure to consider proper nutrition when picking a food for your dog!
Depending on her age, her nutritional needs will differ, but proteins, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals are all essential parts of your dog's diet.
Your dog needs a warm and safe place to sleep
Consider getting a training crate or a dog bed, and you might even let your pup hop up in bed with you at night if you're looking for a cuddle buddy.
DO NOT leave your dog tied up outside.
If you're bringing a pup home, make sure he will have a place to stay safely inside your house. Tying a dog up outside "threatens the dog's health and well-being and the safety of other animals and humans".
Keep the Pet Poison Control hotline in your contacts
They are available 24 hours a day in case of an emergency, and will guide you through the necessary steps to keep your pet safe.
On hot days, it's best to leave your dog inside
Even with cracked windows, a car can get dangerously overheated and leaving your dog outside for too long is harmful as well.
Make sure your dog always has access to fresh water (and not from the toilet bowl!)
Change the water "frequently to ensure freshness" and clean the bowl every day to prevent the "growth of bacteria".
Tip: If your dog keeps knocking his water bowl over, purchase a bowl with a weighted bottom!
Most of all, make sure you give your new best friend lots of love!
Getting a dog takes time and patience, but the love that your new best friend will give you in return is worth every last second.
Regardless of the dog breed you choose, have fun! They say there is no better friend than a dog. We have to agree.
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