How To Take Care Of Your Big Dog

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Big dogs can make wonderful companions. They have a lot of love to give, and they make great cuddle buddies. However, large breed dogs can be more prone to certain ailments due to their size. Here are four things you can do to take good care of your big dog, so they can stay healthy:

1. Manage their diet.

Larger dogs need more calories than smaller dogs, but it's still possible to overfeed your dog. Since big dogs are more prone to joint problems, you will want to make sure your dog maintains a healthy weight. Choose a nutritious dog food that's approved by your veterinarian, and only feed your dog the recommended amount. If you give your dog treats throughout the day as part of a training regimen, you will want to decrease the amount of food you give them accordingly.

2. Give your dog a bed of their own.

Most dogs spend a significant portion of their day napping or lying on the ground. Since big dogs' joints are more delicate than other dogs' joints, the pressure of lying on the floor for extended periods of time can cause pain. Purchasing a dog bed for your pet can make them more comfortable and prevent joint pain. Buy a extra large dog bed made for bigger dogs. Smaller dog beds are unlikely to accommodate your pet's whole body, but extra large dog beds can comfortably fit even the largest dog breeds.

3. Feed your dog the right supplements.

Certain supplements promote joint health, which can protect your large dog from common ailments such as hip dysplasia and arthritis. Glucosamine is a supplement that is often recommended for humans with joint pain, but it can help canines as well, according to PetMD. If you'd like to start supplementing your dog's diet with natural aids such as glucosamine, make sure you consult with your dog's vet first. They can recommend a safe and effective dosage and let you know if there is any reason your dog should not take supplements.

4. Take your dog to the vet.

Regular trips to the vet can allow your veterinarian to diagnose health conditions before they become serious. You should take your large dog to the vet at least once a year. At their checkup, your vet will weigh your dog, examine their eyes and ears, and administer any necessary vaccines. This is a good time to discuss any symptoms you've been noticing that relate to your dog's overall health.