If your pet needs medical care, a licensed veterinarian should be the first resource you turn to for help. With that said, the vet will almost certainly tell you that there is plenty that you’ll have to do on your own. California Veterinary Supply exists to provide the supplies you need to care for your buddy.
To help you even further, we’re kicking off our blog with a series of articles dedicated to all the ways that you can keep your pet happy and healthy. We’ll begin with the most essential information you need. Here is some advice on basic pet care.
Regular baths do more than just keep your companions squeaky-clean. They also protect them from parasites, helps with allergies and skin conditions, and even decreases shedding. As much as dogs and cats may dislike bath time, they need it.
With dogs, you should brush their coats, then run some bathwater that is lukewarm at most. Lather dog shampoo and conditioner throughout their body and rinse until you’ve checked that everything is gone. Once you’ve dried off your pet, reward them with a treat and some affection. This can eliminate any stress they may have and make them more accepting the next time.
Cats already groom themselves, but licking alone may not be enough to ward off fleas and infections (or make them smell pleasant). They can also be a bit more complicated than dogs: if they get too stressed, they might sprint away or even lash out. You may want to trim their nails before starting and even make this a two-person job, with one person holding the cat and the other doing the washing. As with dogs, once you’ve applied and rinsed out the cat shampoo and conditioner, give them treats for cooperating.
Food & Water
Everyone knows that pets need food and water to survive, but it’s not as simple as just leaving some of each in a bowl. Here are some assorted tips for both dogs and cats:
·Food can either be “dry,” such as bags of crunchy pellets, or “wet,” such as cans of chewy meat and mush. Dry food can be left out for a while, but wet food can go bad pretty quickly.
·Whether or not you get dry or wet food, look closely at the ingredients. You should make sure that your pet is getting enough nutrients, carbs, and protein from each meal.
·Water bowls should be refilled at least twice a day. Even if they are nowhere near empty, changing old water for fresh keeps your pet healthy.
·Try to keep your pets on a schedule for mealtime: two or three times at the same time every day. Of course, they have little conception of time and may keep breaking from your plans to beg for more. If so, you could split their meals: dole a little out now, then dole some out at the regular time. This satisfies their demand without overfeeding them.
·Conduct plenty of research before feeding your pet anything other than pet food, so you can avoid feeding them anything that may activate their allergies — or worse. This includes research on food that may only seem obviously safe. For example, most adult cats are lactose-intolerant, so the classic trope of cats drinking milk may result in a mess with your own feline.
·We all love indulging our pets, but don’t give them too many treats. They can quickly get overweight, especially if your treats are already not healthy to begin with.
Bedding & Places for Pets to Sleep
Getting a bed just for your pet may seem like a pointless expense if you don’t mind them just sleeping on your bed, or a sofa, or a large enough chair. However, you shouldn’t underestimate the value of having your own bed, especially if you treasure territory as much as a dog or a cat. You wouldn’t just be giving them a bed: you’d be giving them a home base within your home, where they can spend time on their own and feel safe.
There are many different kinds of bedding out there, and your choice should depend on how your pet likes to sleep. Before purchasing anything, observe them in repose — in particular, note their preferred positions and how much space they take up. After you get the bed, they may need a little time to warm up to it. Don’t be discouraged if they don’t take to it right away, but consider another option if they continue to refuse.
As for cleaning, some bed cushions can be unzipped, removed, and (gently) machine washed. Some that cannot be unzipped or removed could still be (also gently) machine washed if they can fit. Otherwise, you could try laying a towel over the cushion itself, so any shed hair gets on that instead of the bed.
All of this information should be enough to help you with basic pet care. For more advanced care, you can count on California Veterinary Supply to offer a wide variety of supplies and equipment. Feel free to explore our inventory and get your pets any help they need.