New year’s resolutions are designed to help us set and achieve healthy goals, with the first of the year serving as a fresh slate. For pet owners, new year’s resolutions not only give us the opportunity to consider our own wellbeing but also our furry friends’!
It’s up to us as pet parents to make healthy choices and goals for the benefit of our cats and dogs. As you make new year’s resolutions for yourself and your pets this year, one of the most important goals you can set is to add more preventative care to your pet’s routine. Here’s why this goal should be at the top of your list.
Benefits of preventative pet care
Preventative pet care is much like preventative healthcare for humans. It involves a proactive approach to healthcare designed to prevent or minimize the health problems your pet experiences. Unfortunately, like other kinds of proactive care or maintenance, preventative pet care might go unnoticed for a while.
Here are four major benefits of staying on top of your pet’s preventative care.
- Helps your pet live well: The most important preventative care benefit of all is setting your pet up for a long, happy and comfortable life. Preventative care reduces your pet’s risk for both acute and chronic ailments, protecting their health and ensuring that their bodies continue to work as they should for many years. While no pet healthcare plan is guaranteed to grant your furry friend immunity from all health problems, it can drastically reduce their risks.
- Reduce pet pain or discomfort: Along with reducing your pet’s risk of health problems, you will also reduce their risk of developing pain or discomfort. No pet parent wants to see their furry friend in pain or feeling sick! Staying proactive can reduce those scary trips to the vet and worry-filled nights while your pet is feeling ill.
- Saves you money: Some people might avoid preventative pet care because of the up-front costs associated with it. However, preventative care can actually save you money in the long run! The costs associated with regular vet checkups, vaccines, supplements and other preventative measures are often minor compared to vet bills from major diseases or ailments. Running diagnostic tests on pets can cost hundreds of dollars alone, prior to any costs for treatment. By taking care of your pet’s health on the front end, you reduce the chances of unexpected bills later on.
- It’s often good for you, too: Taking a proactive approach to your pet’s health might even come with some health and wellness benefits for you, as well! Things like routine exercise for your pet encourages you to get up and exercise with them, whether it’s a daily walk or a more intense workout with your pup. Additionally, paying attention to supplements and high-quality meals for your pet might get you thinking about the ways you can bolster your own wellness, so you both stay as healthy as possible.
Simple preventative care tips
The start of a new year is the perfect time to revisit or begin your pet’s preventative care routine. The fresh start allows you to set an intention and begin on day one, then follow through every day thereafter.
If you need help getting started, use these tips to implement your pet’s preventative care routine with ease.
- Annual vet visits: The average adult cat or dog should visit the vet once a year for a check-up and booster shots. This visit gives your vet a chance to check for any abnormalities and allows you to ask questions about your pet’s health that could indicate an illness.
- Vaccinations: Vaccinations are a very important part of preventative pet care. While pets may not require all available vaccinations, it’s a good idea to check with your vet about which they recommend based on your region and your pet’s risk level. Some of the diseases vaccines protect against are deadly, so having your pet immunized could be a matter of life or death one day!
- Parasite protection: Protecting your pet from parasites, including gastrointestinal worms, heartworms, fleas and ticks, can also protect them from health problems. Many parasites are carriers of dangerous diseases. Even if they aren’t, though, they can cause many problems of their own that could be difficult to treat.
- Dental care: Oral hygiene is one of the most overlooked aspects of preventative pet care, and the results can be disastrous for your pet’s health and your wallet. Get ahead of tooth decay and periodontal disease by implementing a dental care routine, including tooth brushing, professional cleanings and oral health supplements.
- High-quality pet food: Investing in a high-quality pet food is one of the simplest choices you can make to prevent health problems in your pet. Nutritionally balanced diets provide all the vitamins and minerals your pet’s body needs to function optimally, while a low-quality pet food might contribute to chronic problems like obesity, diabetes or kidney disease.
Making the decision to incorporate preventative care into your pet’s new year’s resolutions is one that will pay off for many years to come. Protect your pet’s health this year with a renewed focus on wellness and proactive healthcare.