Your Animal's Needs
of the easiest ways to end neglect is to make sure
that you are providing your companion animals with
all of life's basic comforts, including veterinary
care, food, water and exercise. Veterinary care
must be tailored to an individual animal's needs
and should include the following:
- A yearly physical
exam, possibly more frequently based on the animal's
age and health.
- Routine blood testing
based upon age and health.
- Routine dental cleanings.
- Routine external
and internal parasite exams.
- Vaccinations as
directed by your veterinarian.
- Dogs, cats and rabbits
should be spayed or neutered. In addition to controlling
overpopulation, sterilization will reduce the
chance that the animal will develop certain types
of cancers and the animal will be less likely
- All animals should
have access to fresh water at all times.
- Feed your companion
animal according to the guidelines recommended
by your veterinarian. Avoid feeding "table food"
and excess treats as these may lead to obesity.
(If you feel that you must give your companion
animal some "table food" and treats, make sure
that they make up less than 10% of the animal's
daily food intake.) Your veterinarian will be
able to advise you as to the nutritional needs
of your companion animal at the yearly physical
- Bathe and groom
your animal as required by the animal's coat.
- Trim nails periodically.
- Participate in basic
obedience training for dogs to keep their minds
- Exercise your companion.
- It is important
to understand that some behavioral issues with
companion animals may be caused by medical problems.
For example, hypothyroidism in dogs has been linked
to aggression. Once the animal receives treatment
for hypothyroidism, the aggression may be resolved.