1. Use of cleansers and chemicals on the floor. It’s nice to have a spotless floor, but scented and chemically colored floor cleaners, floor waxes, and other floor polishers can pose a hazard to your pets. Pets walk on cleaned surfaces, where there is chemical residue, and then lick their paws, which over time can cause a variety of illnesses, including cancer. Use only plain, clean water to mop your floors. If you must use a floor cleaner, do a second mopping with plain water.
Instead of going cheap on the kibble, or even purchasing “premium” brands of dog food, it’s best to buy “super premium." This is like the difference between gasolines – do you want your dog on regular or high test?
4. Lack of dietary support. Dog food isn’t “complete,” no matter what the bag says. Even if you feed a cooked or raw food diet, there are important dietary elements missing. This is because no dog food on the market, or dog food you make at home, includes the kind of nutrients that protects your dog’s health at the cellular level. TELO-20 for Dogs is a chewable supplement that can lengthen your dog’s telomeres. Telomeres occur at the end of the strands of your dog’s (and your) DNA. Every time a cell divides, the telomeres shorten, and when the telomeres get too short, the cell dies.
The scientists who discovered telomeres won the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 2009, and since then, there has been a huge wave of interest in lengthening the lifespan of both humans and dogs using telomere-supporting supplements.
3. Obesity. I have to admit, I’m guilty of having chubby dogs. When I was sick with Lyme Disease for several years and in bed most of the time, my dogs didn’t get the kind of exercise they were used to, so they put on a few pounds. A Purina Lifespan study showed that being overweight takes two years off of a dog’s lifespan. Two years! It’s time to hit the doggie gym – or at least take more walks.
Heartworm medication is crucial, especially for dogs living where there are mosquitoes. I give my dogs a monthly dose of ivermectin (the active ingredient in heartworm medication) that I buy online rather than paying a fortune for a commercially prepared brand. I’m not recommending that you do this because you have to dose very carefully, but it’s definitely a money saver. Some breeds can’t tolerate ivermectin, so do your research before you dose.
Finally, you must apply flea and tick protection to your dog. Ticks carry Lyme Disease, Babesia, Ehrlichia, and a host of other infections that can cause lameness or death.
8. Roaming loose. Speaking of roaming loose . . . dogs that are allowed out of the confines of the home or yard without a leash are at high risk for being attacked by another dog, being hit by a vehicle, being stolen, or being picked up by animal control.
It’s easy to clean your dog’s teeth – you just need a child’s toothbrush and plain water. Once a day, rinse the toothbrush and run it lightly over the outside of your dog’s teeth – no need to brush the insides. If your dog balks, add a little coconut oil to the brush for flavor. You can purchase a specific dog toothbrush and toothpaste – these are nice to have, but not completely necessary.
9. No recall command. Your dog needs to learn to come when called. This is the most important behavior you can teach your dog – if your dog learns absolutely nothing else, he needs to learn that if you call his name, he should come running to you 100% of the time. Dogs without a solid recall command in their vocabulary can find themselves in danger very quickly if you drop the leash or the dog slips out of his collar.
If your dog is not reliable inside the house by himself, if he tends to chew or destroy furniture, crate train him or keep him in a safe dog-proofed room when you’re not home. Never leave your dog in the yard alone – someone could steal him, poison him, or he could dig under the fence and run away.
Keep your dog healthy and safe!
This post is sponsored by TELO-20 for Dogs, the longevity supplement that lengthens your dog’s telomeres, extending the life of his cells at the DNA level. I take the human version of this canine chew, TELO-100, and give my dogs TELO-20 for Dogs every day. Check out my giveaway page for a chance to win both products (and other great stuff)!