The Ultimate Spring Checklist for Dog Owners

The Ultimate Spring Checklist for Dog Owners

It’s never too early to start planning for spring time and beautiful weather! Now is the perfect time for dog enthusiasts to plan for their pet’s needs in the upcoming season. Day to day stress can easily distract you from current tasks, causing your pet to be neglected or in danger. Read below and make a list of the things that need your attention before spring arrives, so that your canine companion is ready for spring!


Veterinary Care


Unless you have a special dog breed that requires monthly veterinary check-ups, it is time to plan your dog’s bi-annual veterinary examination. Dog owners are urged to take their pets when spring begins, and again when fall arrives, a schedule which helps by serving as a reminder. Your dog’s veterinary check-ups are very important, even if your dog appears to be healthy. These preventative measures will help ensure that you and your pet have a long and happy life together.

During the examination, your dog’s veterinarian may administer a Heartworm preventative, vaccinations and other treatments. Regular visits with your canine may seem unnecessary when your dog appears to be healthy, but can help you save big money later, as detecting serious health issues in the early stages can mean optimal health and financial savings.


Outdoor Activities


In the winter time, pets and owners are often stuck indoors, unable to get the exercise they need. When spring arrives, dogs and owners can head outdoors for some exercise and fun. Springtime play activities and an exercise routine will help your dog shed the extra weight packed on during the winter. Obesity in dogs can be very dangerous, inviting a host of other health related problems to occur.

Now is the time to connect with other dog owners to set up much needed social outings. You should also look for pet-friendly parks and places for your dog to enjoy within your community. With a little planning, you and your dog will be ready for some springtime fun. Remember, your dog should be taken on a brisk walk every day, and consider a hike once weekly, allowing your pooch the fresh air and exercise he needs to be happy and healthy.


Check Equipment


Whether your dog is large or small, collars and leashes should be checked every season for signs of wear or weakness. These and other important dog safety equipment can become compromised due to frequent use, requiring the items to be replaced. Even the most durable dog leashes can incur a hardware malfunction from daily use and abuse, which can be dangerous for your canine companion.

Your dog has likely grown a lot since you first brought him home, so you will want to make sure his collar still offers a good fit. In addition, make sure the leash is strong enough to hold his weight, and the harness still fits around his chest. Never try to use safety equipment that is too small for your dog. Also, look at your dog’s collar to make sure your owner information is up to date and legible.

While you are visiting this spring checklist, remember to inspect the fence around your yard. In hard winter months, there may be issues with your fence that needs repair and attention. Make sure pet doors are large enough for your dog to pass through, and purchase a larger dog bed if the current one no longer accommodates his size.


Pest Control


In the winter months, pest control is all but forgotten for most dog owners, but with spring’s arrival, you will need to get prepared. You can easily get your dog ready for spring by deciding which type of pest control will work best for you and your dog. There are many different options when it comes to pest control, including flea and tick shampoos, powders, drops, collars and other methods.

The best way to choose an appropriate form of pest control is by consulting your dog’s veterinarian, or a shopping with a reputable online dog boutique that offers the information you need to make an informed decision. The best pest preventative products for your pet will provide the protection your dog needs against uncomfortable and unhealthy infestations.


Grooming Needs


One of the not-so-fun reasons for dogs and owners to prepare for spring is the upcoming issue of shedding. As a dog owner, you can expect hair… everywhere, unless you plan ahead by scheduling some dog grooming sessions with your dog’s groomer. This does not completely solve the issue of shedding, but can drastically reduce the presence of hair all over your home and clothing.

You should also inspect your home grooming kit, replacing old brushes with broken or worn out bristles. A good dog brush and rake can make a huge difference in shedding. Don’t forget to check the expiration dates on your dog shampoos and conditioners, tossing anything found out of date into the trash.


Dog Toys


During the winter, your dog has probably shown signs of aggression and impatience due to limited exposure to the outdoors. It is common for dogs to become restless in the winter time, taking his pent up energy out on his toys. As the new season draws near, this is a good reminder for owners to examine dog toys, searching for loose pieces, holes or other safety and choking hazards.

As you throw out toys that have been frequently played with and compromised, replace them by ordering new dog balls, discs and other toys online, choosing the toys that your dog will likely enjoy the most. Each of the dog toys you decide to keep should be washed and cleaned to eliminate the presence of bacteria and other debris that could make your dog sick.


Invest in a Microchip


If you think the identification tag on your dog’s collar is enough to protect him from theft or becoming lost, think again. Just a collar containing the owner’s information will not provide the protection your dog needs. Millions upon millions of dogs disappear without a trace every year, so it is important to take necessary precautions needed to keep you and your pet together forever.

For optimal safety, you should have a microchip installed so you can easily locate your pet, thanks to the assistance of the provider. Once your pet is registered in their system, the risk of your dog becoming lost or stolen is drastically reduced.


Take Pictures


Every year, your dog grows and changes as he transitions from a puppy to an adult. These changes may not seem very drastic because you see the canine every day. Dog owners should keep current photographs of their pets, just in case they are needed for identification purposes.

If your beloved pet is lost or stolen, you will have recent photos to use for police reports, flyers, social media sharing, and other platforms. You should also keep a file containing your dog’s specifics: height, weight, identifying marks or injuries, and other indicators that might help recover your pet.


Keep Your Dog Comfortable


As you prepare your dog for the new season, his dog clothing needs will also change. Springtime brings rain showers, making it necessary for your pet to have a raincoat as well as other convenient dog clothes. Make sure that your pet has the clothing he needs to make a big splash in spring, donating any ill-fitting dog garments to friends or shelters. If your dog is comfortable, he will be a much happier pooch.

Assess Your Dog’s Food Supply


As you and your dog start a new year together, consider the dog food and treats that are stored in your home. Most dog owners have various brands on hand, some of which their dogs may or may not like. Check the expiration dates on all perishable dog foods, even the ones in cans. In addition, you should check the dates on all treats, breath sprays, and other digestible dog supplies.

When you follow this spring checklist, you provide the love, support and protection your dog needs for a happy and healthy transition to the new season. With a pet-friendly environment, your dog will be safe and healthy throughout the spring season and into the summer.


Authored by: DogLoveIt

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