AKC Responsible Dog Ownership Month

September is the American Kennel Club Responsible Dog Ownership month. So, what exactly is “responsible dog ownership”? Ask ten people and you are likely to get ten different answers. This month, we take a look at the top five steps you can take to be the responsible dog owner your pup and your community need you to be.

  1. Health – Canine disease and illness can vary from annoying to devastating, as we have recently seen in the case of the canine flu outbreak that struck Atlanta. As an owner, keeping your dog healthy, vaccinated and free from parasites, is a serious responsibility to not only your own dog, but the community in which your dog lives. Keep your dog’s vaccines up to date, feed them a high-quality food, make sure you are giving monthly heartworm preventative, have them groomed regularly and, if your dog is ill or injured, make sure you see your vet. Sick dogs are not only a problem for you, but for our community.
  2. Training & Socialization – The statistics on abandoned dogs in shelters and rescues vary, but it is widely accepted that most abandoned dogs are untrained. Dogs should at least understand basic direction like “sit” and “stay.” In an emergency situation, these cues could save your pet’s life. By training and socializing your dog, you greatly reduce the chances of your dog developing behavioral problems, getting lost or ending up in a shelter. K-9 Coach offers private, group and inboard training to help you and your family have a forever dog and build a lifetime of great memories together.
  3. Leash – While we all wish that our dogs could safely roam freely and play outdoors, the reality is that containment laws exist and are important. Keeping your dog on a leash is crucial to their safety and the safety of others and helps avoid an unwanted call from animal control. Make sure you check your fence and gates periodically to keep your dog from accidentally escaping your yard and, or getting injured. Never take your dog off leash in a public location: remember not everyone loves dogs and not all dogs are friendly.
  4. Exercise – Part of your pup’s needs include physical and mental exercise. Many issues owners have with their dog’s behavior can be directly attributed to a lack of exercise and too much energy. We often refer to too much energy as negative energy. Run, walk and play games with your dog every day and make sure to provide plenty of mentally stimulating toys. Some ideas include fetch and frisbee, of course, but also games like hide and seek, soccer, water-based games (for those who like to swim), long walks with play breaks, etc… If, like so many families these days, it is hard to find the time, join our award winning playcare and take home a tired, happy pup at the end of the day.
  5. Identification – Do you remember the last time you checked your dog’s tag and collar? Often, we put a tag and collar on our pups and forget to occasionally check that the identification is still adequate or even legible. Tags get lost, printing fades and collars get worn out or outgrown. Replace the collar and tag as needed and for an added layer of protection, speak to your veterinarian about microchipping your dog. Microchips can help get your pup back home safe if they get lost and are not wearing any identification.

As always, K-9 Coach is available for you to help with and address any of your dog related needs. So, in celebration of Responsible Dog Ownership month, show us your dog’s tag and collar at check in and receive 10% off any retail item that day. Need a new collar??? Purchase one in our retail area during September and receive 10% off your entire purchase.

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K-9 Coach