This is our Topic of the Month, each month we bring you new, interesting Yorkshire Terrier info...Always something helpful...Info to keep your Yorkie happy & Healthy!
Mistakes that Owners Make
We know that all of you are doing the very best that you can to take great care of your Yorkie. With that being said, there are some mistakes that even the most loving of owners make…without even realizing how it can negatively affect their dog.
There are many reasons why an owner may make a mistake…first time owners may not realize some elements that are very important….others may have had a wonderful 1st dog and assume that all will go well with their 2nd dog if they….other owners may have gotten some advice not knowing that it was one of the top mistakes that dog owners make, etc.
The following article will cover some of the biggest mistakes that dog owners make…They range from things that affect health, training and more.
So, read on to see if you are inadvertently making a mistake that both you can your dog may pay for later!
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Not providing dental care. Many of us grew up during a time when it was thought that a dog’s mouth was clean and sterile…Many owners have told that a dog’s teeth are cleaned when they chew on hard treats. This is a wrong. We now know that none of those things are true.
Periodontal disease is 1 of the biggest problems with canine health. 2 things must be done: brushing and scraping. It is very important to brush your dog’s teeth on a regular basis. This should begin when a pup is 8 weeks old so that they can learn to accept this grooming element and they will grow up to accept it and sit still….If an owner has not been providing dental care for their dog, it is NEVER too late to begin!
Scraping can be done at home or by a professional. In many cases a veterinarian will do this procedure….in other cases, if the work needed is severe, a vet may refer you to a specialist.
Aside from this, it is very important to bring your Yorkie in for yearly checkups. Brushing removes plague, only the vet can remove tarter. They can catch any issues in the early stages, which is important to prevent tooth loss.
One of the biggest mistakes that a dog owner can make is not understanding the need for YEAR round heartworm, flea and parasite protection…it is needed to keep your Yorkie healthy. This cannot be overstated. Heartworm prevention is a must. Flea protection is a must. In addition, an owner should make sure that the veterinarian tests stool samples at least once a year during routine checkups to make sure that the dog is parasite free. It is a sad fact that many dogs have worms and the owners did not know. Testing is vital.
A huge mistake that dog owners make is to not providing professional medical care…some owners believe that they can treat illness at home. When you own a Yorkie, you should be familiar with the illness that the breed is prone to so that you can keep an eye out for early signs. And when your dog is sick, do not waste time trying treat them at home…Precious time may be wasted when the dog needs professional treatment. Some owners believe that they are saving money by not going to the vet…but in many cases, the dog can become very ill without that professional treatment and then the bills will be tripled.
No matter what the breed, pet obesity is a major problem. In many cases, this kicks in as the dog gets older and is not as active. However even adolescent Yorkies can become overweight if an owner is not careful. We love our Yorkies and one of the easiest ways to show that love is to give a yummy treat. But, owners must realize that in the end, that form of showing love and be very bad for the dog’s health….those calories can really add up.
All dogs should get treats…however they should be timed correctly…giving a treat when training (for example if you are trying to train your dog to not bark at strangers, when they are quiet and do not bark, giving a treat can be a great way to reinforce that you approve of their behavior)…However dogs will drool for treats all day and it is up to the owner to use self-control to not give treats constantly.
In addition, it is very important to make walks part of the daily routine. We are all busy…even with multitasking it almost seems impossible to have a half hour of free time…But for the sake of your Yorkie an owner should find the time for a 30 minute daily walk…Minimum.
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If you are trying to train your dog to stop a very bad behavior, during that time they should not have any extra privileges. This is a mistake that dog owners make that is not often talked about. Think about it this way: If your Yorkie is displaying bad behavior that you are working on to fix, why should that bad behavior be rewarded with privileges. Once they are trained and the behavior has stopped, only then should all things go back to normal. Some of the things that we are talking about is: Sleeping in your bed (It gives them greater social status above you and you don’t want this right now)…The same goes for sharing the sofa with you. In addition, you should always be the one to enter and exit the house first whenever you take him or her out…and you should be the one to eat first…when eating at the same time, begin eating and allow 1 minute to go by before putting down their food.
Another mistake that dog owners make: Not being consistent. First of all, dogs who have structure are better behaved. They like to know what to expect. They will heel better, sit better while you groom, listen to commands better during training and so much more if it is done on a schedule.
In regard to training, a dog will RARELY be able to learn anything if they are shown something one day and then allowed to do otherwise the next day. Consistency is the key in so many ways…and will make both Yorkie and owner happier.
It may go against your 1st instinct, but an owner is making a big mistake if they call their dog to them when they are angry or upset about something that the dog did. First of all, punishing or yelling at a dog never helps… Only positive reinforcement when they do something right works. Second, if you call your Yorkie to you only to yell or scold, they will learn to not come to you when called. It doesn’t take long for them to figure that one out!
Sadly, many dog owners make this mistake because they are misinformed. Myths, rumors and false information is believed to be true by some owners and this stops them from doing something very important. Mistake 8? Not spaying or neutering your dog. Let’s get the facts straight…
Sadly, some owners think that spaying or neutering a dog will change their behavior (lazy) or appearance (fat)…this is not true. When a male is not neutered, they are more likely to find a way to wander from home looking to mate. When done, it will completely eliminate any chance of developing testicular cancer….in some cases it can also calm down an overly aggressive dog…and in some cases it an stop a male from marking.
For females, it drastically decreases the chances for developing breast cancer…it eliminates the possibility of ovarian cancer….And it can help with mood swings that a female dog may suffer through during the heat cycle.
Okay, so you have read our top mistakes that dog owners make. If you found any that fit you and your Yorkie, do not feel badly. We are only human and there is so much involved in taking care of dogs that 1 person cannot know everything! The best thing to do is to make a fresh start and make any necessary changes….Your Yorkie will thank you for it!
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