Ask Away Blog: Dog Owners Reveal Their Biggest Regrets

Dog Owners Reveal Their Biggest Regrets

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

 

Have you ever wondered what dog owners regret most about living with their pets? If so, this post is for you. In it, we take a look at some of the things that pet parents wished they had done while they had the chance.

Not Taking Them On Vacation

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Many dog owners recoil at the idea of taking their dog on vacation. It means doing a lot more work, bringing extra equipment and filling out more forms if going overseas.

Taking a dog on vacation, however, is a wonderful experience and, in many cases, actually better for the dog. There is nothing worse than leaving your pooch at the kennels year after year with its sad face, staring at you mournfully. Most dogs dislike kennels intensely.

Dogs also love to explore new places and see new things, just like people. And they like doing it in groups. Vacations are great for dogs because they are always active and feel part of a happy family.

Not Focusing On Their Diet

Dogs, just like people, live longest when they have the right diet. But not many pet owners know that. Instead, they feed their pups as though they are going to be around forever.

Unfortunately, dogs get old fast. Thoroughbreds might only live eight years. Mixed dogs can live up to around fifteen years, give or take.

However, if you provide your dog with an active, healthy lifestyle, they will likely last much longer. Furthermore, they will have fewer health issues once they get into their second decade of life. Giving your dog a proper diet reduces the chance of arthritis.

Not Buying Dog Insurance

If you own a dog, dog insurance is essential. But many owners don’t realise this until it is too late. Their dog gets sick and then they have to meet all vet bills out of pocket. That’s not ideal.

Dog insurance covers you in many situations. You can claim money back if your dog has an injury, requires surgery, or needs medications. Some providers will also offer regular screening and vaccinations as well as part of their packages.

If you are a dog owner, what can you do?

Well, firstly, you’ll need to sign up for a plan. Make sure that it covers all aspects of veterinary care so that you can call on your policy more frequently.

You’ll also want to check how long it runs and what age your dog needs to be. It is better to get insurance from when your pooch is a puppy instead of waiting until they are much older.

Not Going To The Groomers

Grooming is a critical aspect of dogs' lives. Not only does it keep them looking and smelling their best, but it also makes them happy. Just like people, they appreciate a good scrub in the tub.

Going to the groomers, though, isn’t a part of every dog’s schedule, and that’s a problem. Failing to go for regular visits and checkups leaves them more prone to developing fleas and other skin conditions. Excessively long nails can make it hard for them to walk in some situations.

Grooming isn’t as expensive as you might think. And it is something that you can put on subscription. Just sign your dog up and then pay a quarterly fee for multiple grooming services.

Not Taking Them For Walkies

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Looking after a dog can sometimes feel like a full-time job. Small dog breeds need around an hour of exercise per day, while larger dogs need two hours or more.

If you don’t take dogs out of the house to burn off steam, they become boisterous and, eventually, destructive. It is vital, therefore, to do what you can to keep them physically active.

Many owners view their dogs in hindsight and know that they didn’t do enough to look after them. They wished that they had taken them on more walks. And if they did it again, they would certainly find the time.

Not Dressing Them For The Weather

Dogs might have a thick, furry coat, but just like us, they can suffer in bad weather.

Different dogs have different tolerances. They tend to vary in size tremendously, with small dogs prone to getting too cold, and larger breeds more susceptible to overheating. Ideally, you want to provide them with warm protection so that they don’t hurt their paws on icy ground. In very cold conditions, you may also need to give them a second dog coat (which you can buy from stores).

Not Getting Regular Checkups

Discovering health problems early is the key to effective treatment. Vets can often do a better job if they know what is wrong with your dog sooner rather than later.

When you visit the vet, make sure that they keep your dog’s health records up to date. You can cross reference them later if their health begins to fail.

Not Setting Boundaries

Just like children, dogs require strict boundaries to keep them safe. However, some owners don’t provide them, leading to all kinds of issues.

Dogs that don’t have proper boundaries will often run out of the front door and then off into the neighborhood. Many will get lost and won’t be able to find their way back.

Setting boundaries can take two forms: literal and behavioral. Ideally, you should apply both. If you keep a dog on your property, put a physical boundary, like a fence, around the perimeter. Make sure that it is tall enough to prevent them from jumping over.

You should also train them not to run off when they get excited. Dogs should obey your spoken command to sit or heel, even when they are excited about running around the neighborhood.

You’ll also want to set behavioral boundaries indoors too. Dogs should know that they are not allowed to help themselves to food on the kitchen table or sit on the sofa with human family members.

Many dog owners regret not setting boundaries. Their dog might slip out of the front door, never to be seen again.

Not Teaching Dogs Social Rules

Left to their own devices, dogs can sometimes get a little unruly. Asking them to live in a modern human society is a challenge for them. But with the right training, they can do relatively well. Most dogs eventually learn how to conduct themselves properly.

However, owners who don’t train their dogs can run into trouble. Their dogs are constantly pulling on their leashes, barking at people, and aggressively interacting with other dogs in the park.

The trick here is to begin training early - when your dog is still a puppy. If you can quell some of their natural impulses, you often find that you wind up with a far more manageable animal.

Not Getting Dogs In The Bath As Puppies

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If you want your dog to be happy in the bath, you have to train them from being puppies. If you leave it too long, they will rebel against you.

Washing dogs in the bath is important because it allows you to clean all those hard to reach places. If dogs go too long without a bath, they can develop uncomfortable parasites and tangles in their fur. These can then breed further infections.

You don’t need to bathe your dog religiously every day. But you do need to keep them in relatively good condition, perhaps giving them a bath every couple of weeks or so. You can also trim your dog’s nails at the same time if they are a breed that requires this.




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