Having pets is a rewarding life experience. Once you’ve owned a furry companion, your outlook on life will be completely changed. In this article, you’ll explore the many benefits of owning a loyal pet, as well as how you can thank them back for all the positive things they’ve brought to your life by taking care of them in the several different ways a pet owner can.
Benefits of Owning a Pet
Not everyone realizes how valuable a pet can be to their lives. Take a moment and consider some of these benefits of owning a pet. A pet gives you unconditional love and affection, companionship, entertainment, motivation, and emotional support as well. Pets also give you a sense of belonging, helping you with all your problems that are too large for you to solve on your own. Having a pet also gives a sense of responsibility that enhances one’s control over their life.
However, many people think that having a pet is expensive. However, once you have started nurturing a pet, the social and emotional benefits you get from owning your pet outweigh the financial burdens.
Humans who own animals often have different reasons for having pets. Some people think that having a pet gives them more socialization, while others believe that it makes them more independent and self-reliant. It may be difficult to find the right kind of pet for you. If you want to have a dog or cat, it’s important to learn about the breed, age, behavior, and character of the animal before you get a pet. You need to know whether it’ll fit in well with your personality and lifestyle. If you decide that you don’t like the way the pet looks or behaves, it’s a good idea to look for another animal. It may be that there are many options available to you if you just look hard enough.
Giving Back to Your Pets Through Taking Care of Them
It’s noticeable why people enjoy owning a pet and why they choose to have dogs or cats over the company of a human being. Admit it or not, pet owners don’t deserve all the love that these pets offer, even the slightest. As your pets always remind you of how much they love you, you must also do the same. A great way that can be done in little steps to give love to your pets is by ensuring that they have excellent hygiene by taking them to visit a professional dog groomer or caring for their hygiene on your own.
Most people don’t consider hygiene as important for their pets. However, one of the most crucial parts of owning a pet is a pet owner’s responsibility to observe proper pet hygiene as pets can’t do all the cleaning and grooming by themselves. Exercising proper hygiene doesn’t only reflect your pet’s outside appearance but helps your pet stay strong and healthy.
Advantages of Good Hygiene in Pets
Proper hygiene for pets is as important as it is for humans. Pets get dirty on a daily basis and are always exposed to germs and bacteria. While cats do self-groom, you should still give equal hygiene care to them as you would for a dog or other pet. As an owner, it’s important to know what to do in order to keep your pet clean and healthy.
In light of this, check out these ways on how to implement proper hygiene for your pets, and make sure to perform them regularly:
- Make Room for Grooming
If you want your pet to stay healthy, it’s recommended to groom them regularly. Grooming your pet at least twice a week is a good idea. You can start grooming them when they’re still young as this will keep them clean and comfortable for every grooming session. For the younger ones, you should start grooming them when they’re only about three months old. At that age, their fur is already soft and you can easily get all the dirt out of it. Also, they will be ready for the next step which is trimming their coat and clipping their nails. Grooming your pet once a month is a minimum schedule.
If you’re not sure how to properly groom your pet, you can always take them to a groomer. If you have more money and want to go for a more expensive grooming service, you can call in and ask the company about their prices and the services that they offer.
- Practice Good Oral Hygiene
Pet owners should also pay special attention to their pet’s oral health. Like humans, pets are also susceptible to oral and dental diseases if their mouths and teeth are overlooked. Within three years of age, periodontal diseases impact over 70% of cats and 87% of dogs, which can result in early tooth loss.
While it may seem obvious, you should brush your pet’s teeth frequently. If you don’t brush their teeth often enough, their gum may become dry and you will start to see yellow teeth. Your pet’s toothbrush should be made from the softest bristles. This will help prevent tooth decay, which can cause gingivitis. This may also lead to a more serious condition called periodontitis. Therefore, it’s paramount for you to make sure that your pet is getting regular dental care.
- Clean Their Clothes and Beds Regularly
Cleanliness also includes the maintenance of their bedding, shoes, coats, etc. All of these accessories must be spotless. The clothes of your pet must be washed thoroughly and dry cleaned as it will make it more resistant to any sort of damage or attack by fleas, lice, and other similar vermin.
In order to prevent infestations in your pet’s bedding, make sure that the pet bedding you’re giving your pet is 100% cotton and always dry. Moreover, there are flea-control sprays available in the market that can help you get rid of these pests easily.
In addition to keeping the bedding clean, you should also practice bedding maintenance. Ensure that your pet has no food or liquid inside the cage since these can attract insects and can result in an infestation.
Giving your pet clean, spotless, and odor-free bedding helps them have a good night’s sleep, or simply have a great environment to stay in whenever they don’t feel roaming around the house.
- Keep the Litter Box Clean and Odor-Free
Your pet’s litter spot is comparable to your bathroom—it’s where they spend their solitary time to urinate and defecate. The only difference is that you’re more aware of this environment, you know if your bathroom is becoming dirty and know how to clean it. On another end, pets are unaware of this situation. Some don’t know which areas are already dirty and might accidentally get dirt into their fur. If they notice that their litter spot is already pungent, they will find another place in your home to take care of their business.
Therefore, make it a habit to check on your pet’s litter box and clean it every day. Not only does a litter box becomes pungent and filthy over time, but it’s also the perfect breeding ground for bacteria and parasites to infect your pet and even family members.
When cleaning the litter box, only use a mild dish soap then rinse it completely. To prevent further growth of parasites and bacteria, place it under the sun for about an hour before allowing your pet to use it.
Also, while your pet is still young, practice your puppies and kittens on how to mark their territory in the litter box. In this way, they’ll know exactly when to litter and avoid creating mess elsewhere in your home.
- Store and Prepare Food Properly
The food that your pet eats significantly affects their health and hygiene. For instance, spoiled food can make your pet both sick and have a pungent smell. When feeding your pets, always follow the same standard in preparing your own food: nutritious, healthy, and well-stored, prepared, cooked, and served.
Pet food, especially dry food, is susceptible to salmonella contamination if not stored properly. Your pet’s hygiene starts with the type of food that they constantly consume. Because of poorly stored and prepared food, they can experience food poisoning, pest contamination, upset stomach, and altered taste and health advantages of the food.
Here are some ways to practice pet food safety:
- Always check the expiry date.
- Keep them in a cool, dry place.
- Store them in an airtight container and resealable packaging.
- Only keep how much your pet can eat in a container to avoid spoilage and contamination.
- Wash your hands before preparing the food.
- Replace their water from time to time.
- Always use a scoop when getting a food portion.
- Keep food and water bowls clean and dry 24/7.
- Practice proper food waste disposal.
As for wet food, always be sure to keep open cans in your refrigerator. You should also be careful to avoid leaving leftover pet food out in your pet’s bowls. Leaving pet food out can attract vermin like bugs and mice into your home. To avoid this, be sure to dispose of any leftovers that your pet may leave, and be sure to regularly clean out your pet’s bowls to remove any food residue. If you just feed them dry food, you can wash less frequently. But, if you use wet food, be sure to wash your pet’s bowl every day.
- Vacuum Floor and Furniture Frequently
Pets naturally shed hair and dander like how humans shed dead skin cells. If these hairs accumulate excessively inside your home, it’ll be a huge issue for people who have allergic reactions and respiratory problems. Moreover, you’re not the only one that can get affected by excessive shedding around the home, as your pets are too. Cats and dogs can be allergic to their own hair, molds, and dust mites.
Therefore, invest in a good vacuum cleaner with high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter. Vacuum around the house regularly, ideally once to twice a week. When using the vacuum, make sure to go into the smallest details on your floor, carpet, areas with furniture, and drapes, among others. With a regular vacuuming routine, you can minimize the level of potential allergens lingering inside your home.
- Clean Your Outdoor Space Regularly
At first glance, you’ll only be aware of the fact that your pets spend most of their time indoors. Therefore, you’re more likely to focus on proper human and pet hygiene inside the four walls of your home. However, pet owners with outdoor spaces might forget that the outside is also paramount to hygiene, health, and wellness.
In dogs, cleaning outdoor space is particularly relevant to pet owners, meaning you’ll need a pooper scooper. Although cats are easier to train with the help of their litter box, furry canines are stubborn, and like to litter on exterior spaces—grass, pavement, name it.
Imagine your children and family members spending time in your outdoor spaces. If your yard is infested with fecal matter and children accidentally come into contact with it, they can pick up bacteria, viruses, and parasites in this litter, including roundworm, E. coli, giardia, and salmonella. Children are more susceptible to these encounters since they tend to put their hands in their faces and mouths without washing hands.
When taking care of your pet’s fecal matter, always wear gloves and utilize a tool to pick them up, and dispose of them immediately in waste bags.
Once you’ve accepted pets into your home, you’ll realize that they’re not just animals, but an important part of your family. Living with pets has its pros and cons, and to minimize its disadvantages, perform the regular practice of proper hygiene on your pets for the sake of their health and wellness, as well as you and your family’s. These hygiene tips discussed in the article will help you achieve a home with good health and cleanliness safe from zoonotic diseases.