2016 is right around the corner, and many people will start making resolutions for the new year. While you’re promising to eat better, exercise more and spend less, here are a few resolutions to make as a pet owner.
Make sure your pet has proper identification. If your pet is ever lost, this is his best chance of being recovered. According to the National Council on Pet Population Study and Policy, fewer than two percent of lost cats and only 15-20 percent of lost dogs are returned to their owners. These low numbers reflect the ongoing need for pet IDs. In addition to a collar ID, consider microchipping. Microchips are permanent identification implanted underneath your pet’s skin. The microchip can be scanned by a vet and then linked to a national database with your pet’s ID and owner information.
Don’t skip your pet’s vaccinations or treatments. Vaccinations prevent serious illnesses, protect your pet from contagious diseases and help keep your pet healthy. Vaccination schedules are different depending on your pet’s breed and age, so be sure to check with your vet to find out which vaccines are needed each year. Also be sure to have your dog tested for heartworms and begin the monthly preventive treatments.
If you haven’t already, be sure to have your pet spayed or neutered. Spaying and neutering helps prevent overpopulation and decreases the number of cats and dogs euthanized in shelters. Spaying and neutering also decreases your pet’s urge to roam, and studies have shown sterilization helps pets live longer, healthier and happier lives.