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What is responsible pet ownership?

Posted Thursday, December 3, 2015, at 3:11 PM

Pet ownership is a privilege. As an owner you should provide good food, a comfortable and protected area to sleep, and adequate exercise. Keeping your pet updated on needed vaccines, spaying and neutering to prevent unwanted offspring, and making sure your pet's coat is clean and mat-free are an important part of pet care. Heartworm, internal parasite, and flea prevention are essential in Northeast Arkansas. The above care includes the basic things that your pet should have.

Being a good pet neighbor is also part of responsible pet ownership. Make sure that your dog does not bark continuously or late at night. Try to keep your cat off cars and out of trash. This can be very upsetting to your neighbors. Keep your dog in a fenced-in yard. Do not allow them to roam and get into trash and other people's yard. Even if you live in the country. You might think your dog doesn't get out of your yard, but ask your neighbor who has to clean up their trash from where your non-roaming dog scattered it all over the ground. I now live in the country and love finding doggy doo right outside my door.

When you are a bad pet neighbor this can cause your neighbors to harm your pets. Some may resort to poisoning or shooting your pet. In most cities, it is against the law to discharge firearms within the city limits. If your neighbor's pet is annoying, talk to them before harming their pet. Sometimes a cat or dog may accidentally get out, so talk to your neighbor before harming. If talking to the neighbor doesn't help, call the dog catcher or local police to report a problem. That bothersome dog or cat may be someone's beloved pet that they do not know is causing a problem.

Be a responsible pet owner and neighbor. Keep your dog under control at all times. I know people who think it is cruel to keep their pet in a fence. Do you not think it cruel to put your pet in harm's way? Remember they are basically a 6-year-old. Would you let your 6-year-old roam around the neighborhood unattended?

Remember to always spay and neuter your pet to help stop overpopulation of animals.

If you follow the above tips, you can be a responsible pet neighbor!

If you have questions about being a responsible pet contact Dr. Underwood of Trumann Animal Clinic and Best Friends Vet Mobile Service at catdoc56@pcsii.com.



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