If you grew up in the country or the suburbs of any big city, a dog was probably part of your family. However, if you grew up in the city or are currently an urban resident, having a dog or other pet can prove challenging for you and your pup, especially if your furry friend is confined to an apartment while you work hard to make sure he can eat. Here are five top tips to raise your dog in the city and ensure that your pawed pal is as healthy and full of energy as his country or suburban pet peers.
Urban pet tip #1
Get your dog some exercise!
Lack of exercise for most dogs can negatively affect their temperament. A dog should be taken out at least three times per day – once in the morning, once in the afternoon and once in the evening. If you can afford it, a dog walker can greatly improve your dog’s agility and lifespan. Since private walks can be expensive, look for a group walk – they tend to be a little longer and are a lot more cost effective (while socializing your dog a little, too). Visit www.Dogwalker.com to find a local walker; the site also has some great dog-walking tips and information on becoming a dog walker yourself!
Urban pet tip #2
Find a great dog park
A local dog park is a great opportunity for you to meet other dog owners and socialize your dog. Look for dog parks that allow off-leash activity – an effective way to optimize your dog’s exercise time and get him used to the company of other dogs and people. Visit www.DogParkUSA.com to find dog parks in your locale.
Urban pet tip #3
Take your dog to a good vet
While at the dog park, ask other dog owners which vet they visit. Over the lifetime of your dog, you’ll be visiting the vet plenty and it’s worth hearing from others which vets are most affordable and give your animal the best care. If all else fails, www.VetsNearYou.com provides veterinary contact information based on your zipcode.
Urban pet tip #4
Opt for a scheduled pet food delivery service
While it may be possible to get a quick-fix of dog chow from your nearest bodega, changing dog foods when you accidentally run out can wreak havoc with your dog’s digestive system. Set up pet food delivery to your residence. Visit www.PetFlow.com to see how dog food delivery can make your life easier.
Urban pet tip #5
Take your dog to an obedience class
Your dog’s natural instinct is to bark at noises – and there are a lot of noises in the city. Work with a dog-training professional to help your dog attune to noises, other dogs and people without needing to bark at them endlessly. Check with your vet or the local listings for dog obedience classes or find American Kennel Club training clubs at www.akc.org/events/trainingclubs.cfm.
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