Pet Care Tips Your Veterinarian Wishes You Knew

To keep your fur babies healthy and happy, make sure to follow these pet care tips from Canadian veterinarians.

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Veterinarian tipsPHOTO: SHUTTERSTOCK

Your pet eats too much

About half of all cats and dogs are overweight or obese, according to the Canadian Animal Health Institute. Excess weight is linked to joint and heart disease, as well as diabetes and cancer. For your pet’s health, sometimes love means saying no to those pleading eyes.

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Dog food in bowlsPHOTO: SHUTTERSTOCK

Portion control

Use a kitchen scale to portion food in grams, not scoops, to get a better idea of how much you’re giving Fluffy, says Dr. Gwen Jeun, a veterinarian in Windsor, Ont. As for treats, Jeun recommends including them in the total calories you feed your pet in a day and only giving these rewards if they’ve been earned.

Here are the easiest ways to get rid of pet odour.

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Watch out for poisonous foods

Chocolate isn’t the sole food that’s lethal to dogs. Xylitol (an artificial sweetener), bread dough, grapes and macadamia nuts can also cause severe illness or death. Try out the best dog multivitamin supplement.

Find out what your dog’s tail is trying to tell you.

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Dental hygiene is important

Ideally you’d brush your pet’s teeth every day, but most vets know that’s not easy. “I understand that people are busy,” says Jeun. “I recommend annual dental cleanings, under anaesthesia, to remove tartar and polish the teeth.” Doing so can stave off periodontal disease and bacteria, which can be harmful to the heart, lungs, kidneys and liver.

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You need regular check-ups

Vets aren’t just for shots—annual exams can make the difference between catching a problem early and making a diagnosis too late.

Make sure you haven’t been misdiagnosing your pet.