February is National Heart Month, and we know your dog’s heart health is just as important as any other member of the family. Here are some tips on how to help your dog have a healthy ticker.
Educate yourself on your breed of dog and if he is more susceptible to heart conditions. If he is at a higher risk, be sure to know the warning signs of heart disease. Some of the warning signs include coughing, difficulty breathing, weakness, weight loss or gain and a swollen abdomen.
A dog’s diet can play a huge role in maintaining heart health. A dog should always have a well-balanced diet of high quality ingredients and high quality treats should be given in moderation. Reading the labels on food and treats will help ensure that you know what is in your dog’s food, the nutritional benefits of the ingredients and provide feeding guidelines. An overweight dog’s heart has to work harder than the heart of a dog that is at an ideal weight for his breed.
It’s a proven fact that exercise can decrease the risk of disease in humans and your dog is no different. Keeping a regular exercise plan for your dog will help to keep both of you active and healthy.
Regular veterinary checkups are crucial to ensure that your dog is healthy and has no signs of heart disease. A vet will be able to listen to his heart, perform any additional tests he may need and diagnose if something is wrong. A vet can also help you select the proper food and diet for him, as well as recommend an exercise plan.