VETERINARY MEDICINE TODAY
Being a Responsible Pet Owner
Iâ€™m going to take a break from Shilohâ€™s Law this month while I muddle through the legislative process. Prevention and education is key to preventing animal neglect & cruelty. The following are some tips on being a responsible pet owner â€“ itâ€™s so much more than just providing food, water and shelter for your pet. Our pets are totally dependent on us for everything.
â€¢ Owning a pet is a lifetime commitment. The average life span of a dog is 10-15 years although this can vary depending on the breed of the dog. The average life span of a cat is 15-18 years. If you can't make the commitment, don't get the pet.
â€¢ Spay or neuter your pets. There are far too many homeless animals.
â€¢ Make sure your home is "pet" safe. Pesticides, medications, household cleaners and some houseplants can be deadly to your pet. Keep them out of reach.
â€¢ Provide veterinary care for your pet including vaccinations, flea, tick, heartworm and intestinal parasite prevention and annual wellness visits.
â€¢ Keep your dog on a leash when outside unless the dog is contained in a fenced in yard or at an off leash dog park.
â€¢ Both dogs and cats need identification! Microchipping should always be done, but having an id tag on the collar is highly recommended.
â€¢ Take your pet to obedience training and socialize your pet with other people and animals.
â€¢ Give your pet the proper diet. Obesity can be as deadly as malnutrition. Other foods can be deadly, such as chocolate, raisins, grapes and some artificial sweeteners.
â€¢ Make sure your pet gets the right amount of exercise.
â€¢ Follow the 10 Commandments listed below - be kind to your pet and show him with love... remember you are his world.
10 Commandments from a Petâ€™s Point of View
Written by Stan Rawlinson, a British animal behaviorist
1. My life is likely to last 10 to 15 years. Any separation from you will be painful for me. Remember that before you buy me.
2. Give me time to understand what you want from me. Don't be impatient, short-tempered, or irritable
3. Place your trust in me and I will always trust you back. Respect is earned, not given as an inalienable right
4. Don't be angry with me for long and don't lock me up as punishment, I am not capable of understanding why. I only know I have been rejected. You have your work, entertainment and friends. I only have you
5. Talk to me sometimes. Even if I don't understand your words, I understand your voice and your tone. You only have to look at my tail
6. Be aware that however you treat me, I'll never forget it, and if it's cruel it may affect me forever
7. Please don't hit me. I can't hit back, but I can bite and scratch and I really don't ever want to do that
8. Before you scold me for being uncooperative, obstinate, or lazy, ask yourself if something might be bothering me. Perhaps I'm not getting the right foods or I've been out in the sun too long, or my heart is getting old and weak. I may be just dog tired
9. Take care of me when I get old. You too will grow old and may also need love, care, comfort and attention
10. Go with me on difficult journeys. Never say, 'I can't bear to watch,' or 'Let it happen in my absence.' Everything is easier for me if you are there. Remember, irrespective of what you do I will always love you
Shannon Adamczyk, Office Manager
Kenosha Animal Hospital