All Pet's Life is reader-supported. When buying products through links on the site, we may earn a commission (at no extra cost to you).

8 Secrets to keep your dog healthy [2023]

Dogs are more sensitive than most people realize. It’s not enough to keep your dog outside and put out a bowl of dried kibbles and bits anymore. Most dogs need much more attention to living a long healthy life. Just like humans, they need clean healthy food and a toxic-free environment. Let’s take a look at some easy things you can do to keep your dog healthy.

keep your dog healthy

Here’s the list of how to keep your dog healthy

1. Gluten-Free Food

dog food

Many dogs are gluten intolerant and can develop skin rashes or get explosive diarrhea from it. When dog food manufacturing companies sacrifice quality to improve their bottom line, they often use cheap products that do not nourish your dog. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye and at the very least you should get your dog gluten-free food. Salmon dog food is often gluten-free.

2. Don’t Feed Them From The Table

dog sitting wooden chair

If you’re going to give your dog any human food stick to carrots, apples and celery. Chips, meats and other processed foods can raise their blood sugar and cholesterol to unhealthy levels. They may become disinterested in healthy food if they too used to hot dogs and hamburger buns. Just like humans, they should not have refined flour or sugar. Remember not to leave your trash out because many things humans consume are poisonous to dogs. Don’t leave food lying around either. If you have guests, make sure to warn them not to feed your dogs.

3. Raw Food

raw chicken

Many pet owners are feeding their dogs raw food. The meat is free of allergens and helps dogs keep off weight. The healthier food options for dogs is a bit more expensive but it can save you expensive vet bills. There are quite a few great raw dog food options on the market.

4. Regular Exercise

exercising with dog

Just like humans, dogs can gain weight if they don’t exercise regularly you can also teach them on how to use treadmill for dogs. If they gain weight, their hips can give out and they can develop heart problems or circulation problems. Humans need the endorphin release from exercise and so do our canine friends. They will get the mood and depressed if they don’t get walked or ran. Playing with your dog can keep them alive much longer and make them easier to deal with. There are also different types of treadmills for dogs large or small. Even if dogs are small, they need to get outside to get vitamin D from the sun and to get fresh air. Radon is an indoor air pollutant that can affect both humans and animals. Radon is similar to mold but less well-known.

5. Brush Their Teeth

dog brushing teeth

When humans don’t brush their teeth, they get plaque buildup and bacteria grow which can lead to infections in the gums. Dogs also need a regular teeth cleaning. While there are certain treats designed to help clean your dogs teeth, there’s nothing as effective as brushing them. Celery is also a helpful thing to give them for oral hygiene. Small dogs are prone to losing their teeth and it can be expensive to keep up on their vet bills if you don’t do preventive care.

6. Buy Healthy Cleaning Products

natural cleaning products

Many cleaning products that you use on your floors can have toxic fumes that affect your dogs respiratory and nervous system. It’s best to choose natural cleaning products instead of harsh cleaning agents like bleach or ammonia. You can also save money making your own natural cleaning products at home with vinegar and citrus. Remember if you are going to spray for bugs, paint or have carpet laid, the fumes can be very bad for your dog. Carpet adhesive and paint give off fumes that dogs should not breathe.

7. Use Positive Reinforcement

woman feeding dog

Dogs are sensitive and they respond well to positive treatment. Negative environments can compromise a dog’s immune system and make them susceptible to illness or depressed. Using a friendly tone of voice instead of a stern tone of voice can make a big difference. Also, try to train them using positive reinforcement with a reward system instead of a punishment system and never hit them. Dogs need your love and affection to live a healthy and happy life, they are dependent on spending time with you and will get sick if they are neglected. Dogs love to have a purpose and when you train them and give them tasks, it can keep them healthy. Stress is also something you need to take into account. If your dog is left alone for long periods of time it can cause them stress. If there is a lot of yelling or fighting in your home, whether it is directly at your dog or not, it can suppress their immune system and cause both inflammation and make them susceptible to sickness. Try to provide a positive and loving environment for you dog. In turn, you will be in a positive environment.

8. Alkaline Water

siberian husky drinking water

Because dog food is not alkaline, their internal pH can get high very easily. Feeding your dog alkaline water can keep them healthy and ward of illness. Many pet owners feed their dogs alkaline water and see their dogs health improve. Alkaline water is available at water stores in large jugs and is very inexpensive. You can also buy drops to add to water to make it alkaline.

Just as humans often choose to see a holistic doctor, there are veterinarians who are more holistic in their approach. If your dog gets sick, they may look at alternative options like dietary changes instead of medicating your pet. Some dogs are put on supplements for their health. Just like humans, preventive health is always the best option. A healthy diet and regular exercise are going to do wonders for your pet’s health.

Next up here are 10 of the healthiest dog breeds out there

These days pets cost a lot. From those silly designer outfits to pet insurance, it seems there are endless things to buy for your pet. The intelligent pet owner or spend conscious person will try to get a breed that will not have lots of health problems down the line. Here are the 10 most healthy breeds that are known to have a strong immune system and hopefully won’t hurt the purse too much! Some breeds require special diets and are prone to health problems so why not try to avoid those expenses by getting a healthy breed?

1. Border Collie

border collie orange background

Not only is this a hearty breed, it’s also one of the most intelligent. This dog was bred near the Anglo-Saxon border and used to hunt sheep mostly. They are alert and need to be trained not to bark too much. They are said to be very intuitive and can read human emotions. They usually weigh 25-45 pounds and need to be able to run. They also live a long life of 13-15 years.

2. Chihuahua

chihuahua closeup 1

This is another breed that lives a long life which is anywhere from 10-18 years on average. They come in many colors and with both long and short hair. They make good guard dogs as they are alert and will tell you if someone so much as opens a door. They only weigh about 8-10 pounds on average but they are hearty and as long as you train them, they are easy to maintain and housebreak. They usually like to cuddle up on the laps of their family members and strangers.

3. Poodles

poodle closeup

They are generally a healthy breed with a long life expectancy. Poodles come in three sizes and generally, the smaller ones are able to live up to 18 years maximum. The three poodles are referred to as the standard poodle, the miniature poodle, and the toy poodle. They are known to do well in obedience competitions and their entertaining personality will keep you smiling ear to ear. They are highly intelligent and easy to train.

4. Bichon Frise

bichon frise closeup

This white fluffy breed is generally very healthy. They are well suited for apartment living but don’t like being alone for too long. This is not one of the yappy small dog breeds as they are well-mannered and even keel. They make great companion dogs and need to be walked with other dogs so they don’t get the small dog complex. They also can be tricky to housebreak but it’s very possible. Brison Dog breed is smart, active, and loyal dogs. If you plan to own Bichon Frise. Find out everything you need on how to take care of them.

5. Belgian Malinois

belgian malinois sitting on grass

This is a herding breed that usually lives to be 10-14 years old. They are loyal and intelligent. They are a large dog breed that usually weighs 55-75 pounds with females being smaller than males. This breed needs early socialization and proper training so they don’t become aggressive with strangers and other dogs. They are often used by police because they are easy to train.

6. Beagle

beagle red background

If a beagle is properly exercised, they tend to be very healthy. This is a scent hound that is guided by it’s nose. They were used to hunt small animals and they tend not to bark but howl or make other unique noises. This breed is intelligent and very good with children. They are a gentle breed which can be well suited for apartments as long as they are properly socialized.

7. Australian Cattle Dog

australian cattle dog closeup

This dog breed has a life expectancy of 10-13 years which is pretty standard for larger dog breeds. This dog needs lots of exercise and they are playful and known to be good with children. They also make a great watchdog and are easily trained. They tend to be territorial so they do need adequate training so they don’t become aggressive. They are a hearty breed and usually weigh 44-62 pounds.

8. Havanese

havanese closeup

The Havanese is a healthy breed and known to have very few health issues. This is a toy dog breed that lives 14-16 years on average. They are playful and lively and friendly with other dogs. This dog is not prone to shedding and is easy to train. They can tend to be easily spoiled so keep that in mind. This breed is highly intelligent, good with children and with cats. They usually weigh 8-12 pounds and live a good life of 12 to 15 years.

9. Siberian Husky

siberian husky closeup

The dense coat and multicolored eyes of the Siberian husky give it a unique energy. They often have bright blue eyes which are absolutely beautiful. Keep in mind this is the closest breed to the wild wild and so they can tend to be aggressive if not trained from a very young age. They are known to live 12-15 years and they don’t shed much. They grow to be 35 to 60 pounds and about one foot ten inches tall at the shoulder. They are well suited for cold weather which is one of the reasons they are so healthy but be aware of how you take care of a Siberian husky as it needs proper maintenance.

10. Labrador Retriever

labrador retriever portrait

This is a hunting dog that can adapt to cold climates and is naturally active. This breed is great for therapy dogs or as a work dog. They are easily trained and love human company. They are an overall very happy breed and live to be 10 to 12 years. This is a good breed for first time dog owners as they don’t tend to be aggressive or hard to train. They grow to be 55 to 80 pounds and need a good amount of exercise.

Remember that just like humans, all purebred dogs can be prone to health problems so it’s very important to see the health reports of a dog before you buy them. Be wary if someone tells you the breed has no health problems as all breeds are inclined to have certain things. Overall you can focus on preventive health care by properly exercising your dog, giving it the most healthy food and regular check ups as well as good training and brain stimulation. Be sure to do your research on a breed to find out other great preventive health techniques to keep your dog healthy such as teeth brushing and even the ever growing in popularity supplements that can help your dog live a long healthy life.

Keep your dog healthy: 8 signs that your dog might be ill

If you suspect that your dog is ill you should call and make an appointment with your vet as soon as you notice the issue. Dogs don’t have the ability to tell us when there’s something wrong so they may have had this problem for a while before you finally noticed it. Look out for these 8 tell-tale signs of a problem and then consult your veterinarian on how to proceed.

1. Unusual Dog Behavior

The first sign that a pet owner will, usually, see is when their pet starts to act differently. If you normally have a hyperactive pet but now they’re suddenly uninterested in playing ball or doesn’t want to go for that ritualistic morning run with you, there may be something wrong. There are also dog hiccups that you don’t have to worry about it’s perfectly normal. Other behavior changes may include sudden anger and aggression in an otherwise kind-hearted dog, or they may start to hide in strange places around the house. When a dog believes it’s nearing the end of their life they will hide from you so they can be alone, in peace, and not be seen.

2. Dog’s Stomach Issues

Another indicator that something is wrong is the obvious stomach problem. Your dog may be vomiting immediately after a meal or maybe they’re vomiting when they hasn’t eaten all day. Man or dog, this is an indicator for anyone that they aren’t feeling too well. Other stomach problems may be a loss of appetite.

3. Strange Breathing

Breathing patterns in dogs can mean different things. Naturally, there’s exhaustion which comes with a lot of heavy panting. But, if your dog begins to cough excessively or their breathing sounds labored, there may be something else going on. Breathing patterns can be a huge indicator in dogs but if they’re hanging out outside with you on a hot summer day with no water in sight, it’s safe to say they just need a drink rather than a trip to the vet.

4. Dog Stool Issues

If your dog is having trouble going to the bathroom there could be a serious problem. This is where their diet comes into play because they will more than likely have this problem from being fed things that they can’t digest, like chocolate for example. If your dog eats something that either isn’t food or that their body can’t digest they will have trouble expelling it or this may lead to vomiting and diarrhea.

5. Skin Problems

If there are lumps that weren’t there the other day or they have a rash you should take your dog to the vet as soon as possible. The biggest sign on the skin when your dog has a problem is loss of hair. If a rash or lesion goes untreated for too long your dog will start to lose hair in that region and then the wound will begin to ooze. If your dog is biting or scratching at one spot for extended periods of time you should check it out first and then call your vet so you can let them know what’s going on.

6. Fever

Fever is generally hard to tell in dogs unless you have an animal rectal thermometer. Getting your dog to allow you to take their temperature in the first place is usually the hardest part and then you have to remember that dogs aren’t humans and their internal body temperature is different than ours. Their healthy internal body temperature ranges from 99-102.5 degrees Fahrenheit. You should always keep a rectal thermometer in the house in case your pet starts to act differently and you need to check them out before bringing them to the vet.

7. Brain Issues

This is where things get really obvious. If your dog begins seizing or going through fainting spells then you should take your dog to the vet immediately. When your dog begins to seize you should treat them the same way you would a human. Meaning, hold them steady but don’t restrain them because they can hurt themselves or you can hurt them from holding onto them too tightly. After the episode is over, take your dog to the nearest vet or emergency care and consult with the veterinarian on how to handle your dog during episodes and if there’s a medication your dog can take to prevent them in the future.

8. Dog in Pain

Pain is pretty obvious for anyone, be they human or canine. If your dog is yelping when they walk or doesn’t want to eat or maybe they just won’t run anymore, there may be a problem in their joints or they may have broken a bone. Another thing to look out for when your dog refuses to run or walk is the bottoms of their feet. Their pads are very sensitive, tender areas so if they get a cut there they won’t want to do anything that involves applying pressure until it heals.

Leave a Reply