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No two dogs are alike, not only in looks, but in personality. While my dog may be lazy and loving, your dog may be excitable and temperamental. Regardless, there are a few basic tenets of ownership you absolutely need to know. The following article provides a great deal of advice from dog owners who have experienced it all.

You may know that chocolate is dangerous for dogs, but you may not know the specifics. Chocolate is dangerous because of the stimulants caffeine and theobromine. Baking chocolate is the most dangerous, with a high amount of stimulants. White chocolate contains the least amount of stimulants. Take you dog to vet if he ingests chocolate.

Your dog needs a stimulating environment if it is going to live a long and healthy life. Providing him or her with one is not really that hard. Simply make sure you take your dog for walks each day, and purchase a few toys that you and your pet can play with together.

You may be tempted to use your favorite hair shampoo on your dog, but this should not be done. Human shampoo can cause dog skin to dry out. Instead, find a quality shampoo that is made for dogs. When you bath your dog, make sure to rinse all of the residue out of his fur.

Don’t assume your toy-sized dog’s bite isn’t dangerous, just because he’s little. A lot of owners brush-off training, thinking that the smaller breed dog can get away with a little bad behavior and this isn’t true. As a responsible canine master, you’ve got to make certain your dog does not pose a threat to anyone by having him well trained.

If you’ve been considering adopting a dog but still aren’t sure, you could try to become a foster owner first. There are plenty of animals sitting in homeless shelters who desperately need a home due to over-crowding and limited shelter resources. Fostering is a great way to help a dog and get a feel for what having a dog is like.

Your dog needs to exercise regularly. Like humans, dogs must exercise to burn calories, remain healthy, and help their minds stay sharp. Exercising also helps them avoid boredom that can cause destructive behaviors. Keeping your dog active can curb chewing, biting, digging, and chasing urges. It can even help them avoid depression.

Your dog needs plenty of affection. Similar to other areas of life, dog owners notice a dog’s bad behavior rather than the good. This could lead to trouble down the line. Remember to praise and be affectionate with your dog more frequently than you discipline him. Your dog is much more likely to showcase the proper behavior if you do so.

Put your dog through obedience training. A well-trained dog is a joy to live with for both you and them. Teaching them simple commands like “Come,”� “Heel,”� “Sit,”� and “Stay”� can help curb or prevent troublesome behaviors in no time. You can either teach them yourself, or you can find out about obedience courses by contacting the SPCA or the local humane society for class recommendations.

Dogs tend to get cuts and scrapes on their paws from things they step on. Wash any small cut your dog has with some antiseptic and then put a bandage on it. If the cut is deep, check with your vet.

Make time for your dog. You are probably aware that your dog always has time for you, so it’s time to return the favor. You might take the dog out for some exercise, or you might just set some time aside to rub his belly. Remember to spend a bit of special time with your dog, and he’ll appreciate it.

Keep in mind that the pads on a dog’s foot are very similar to the skin at the bottom of a human foot. This means that they have a hard time withstanding extreme heat and cold. If you have to take your dog out in extreme weather, make sure that you cover their paws, or you don’t have them out for very long.

Puppies are cute and cuddly, but remember that puppies eventually grow into dogs, and rather quickly. Make sure that you put a lot of thought in your decision to get a dog. Taking a dog into your home is a long-term commitment and comes with certain costs and responsibilities, but is ultimately rewarding.

If you are in the market for purchasing a dog that has been breed you need to make sure that you have every stipulation in writing. For example, if the breeder promises to spay or nueter the pet, you must get that in your contract. Doing this will protect you from any conflict later on.

Dogs love to chew. Make sure your dog has plenty of things that he can chew on so he doesn’t chew on things he shouldn’t be chewing on. Dogs love to chew on rawhide and various other things that are manufactured and sold just for dogs to chew on.

If you won’t be the only person tending for your dog, make sure that everyone who will be taking care of the dog is on the same page. If you have one way of doing things and your significant other has another way, you should sit down and explain the ways and figure out which one will be applied constantly by both people.

When you are training your dog, try to be understanding and do not get frustrated when the dog does not do what you want them to do. Training takes time. Over time, your dog will learn the proper training. You are trying to change the natural instincts of the animal, so expect that the dog will make mistakes and be patient with them.

Dogs of all shapes and sizes make for amazing pets, and a great owner takes the time to learn all about their care. You have done just that, so use the tips you have read here to get down to business. A few simple changes or lessons can really make your dog the happiest he can be.