A working dog is more than just a beloved pet. He or she is a pet who is trained to perform practical tasks or trained to perform at various dog shows. Examples of working dogs include service animals, guide dogs, herding dogs, guard dogs, detection dogs, and therapy dogs. If you have a working dog in your care, you may be wondering how to keep him or her happy and healthy.
Here’s a simple guide to follow.
Ensure that they are eating enough carbohydrates
Most working canines will expend more energy than companion canines, hence the reason why they might require a different feeding approach. In order to keep their energy levels consistent and to ensure that they feel fuller for longer, it is wise to feed working dogs food that is high in protein to build and maintain strong muscles, that is moderately high in fat, and that contains a decent amount of carbohydrates for maximum energy reserves.
The best way to give them what they need is to choose a dog food that contains ancient grains as a source of carbohydrates. These carbs are high in protein and fiber and are much easier for most dogs to digest. Learn much more about carbohydrates for working dogs and how to find the right dog food via Taste of the Wild.
Allow for regular downtime
Working dogs also need time to rest in between their daily duties, so always make sure that they have a quiet, comfortable place to settle down for a nap or perhaps laze around in the sun for a few hours. They should also always have access to fresh water as needed.
Know your pet
Take the time to recognize when your dog is not himself and take action to determine the cause quickly by calling or popping into the vet. When you spend so much time with your service animal or show dog, you will start to pick up on their moods and when they are feeling pain. This will play a key role in nurturing their health and happiness through the years.
Spend lots of time playing and bonding
A working dog’s life should not only revolve around duties. Take the time to snuggle, play, and bond whenever possible. A happy, fulfilled working dog is certain to perform optimally and lead a long and healthy life.
Visit the vet frequently
There are a lot more expectations weighing on a working dog, which means that their health is extremely important to maintain. Dogs that are suffering from an underlying condition will not be able to perform at their best and can deteriorate much faster if their condition is left undetected and untreated. Hence, it is always recommended to take your dog to the vet for regular check-ups. While once a year would suffice for a pet, working dogs may need extra attention, so it is a good idea to schedule an appointment every six months.
Remember to chat with your vet and ask for guidance should you have any concerns regarding the proper care of your loyal working canine.