Last updated on February 11, 2015
Many of us have rituals and household maintenance we do this time of year, like changing the batteries in our smoke alarm, getting the windows ready for winter, and having the furnace or heaters serviced and checked. There are 10 key things you can do now and throughout the year, to ensure the canine members of the family are being properly “serviced and maintained.” Here is our top 10 “Fall Maintenance for Dogs” CheckList aka “10 things dog owners should do:”
- Update your dog’s ID collar. Are the numbers correct? Did your cell phone change? Is the lettering and/or engraving still legible?
- Ensure you have a Pet Safety Sticker on your windows and doors where rescue workers can see it and be aware a dog(s) is inside. Check out this free kit from ASPCA.
- Do a once over after every walk. Run your fingers and potentially a flea comb through the dog’s fur. Check closely for any lumps or bumps, and be extra diligent for tick screening. Ticks burrow under leaves and in dark moist places, so those romps through the leaves are fun, but must be followed up with a once-over. See what a tick looks like here and for more tips on screening the dog for lumps and bumps.
- Update your emergency evacuation kit. Having evacuated my home this year due to flood threat, having the essentials ready in a hurry is in everyone’s best interest.
- Canine’s canines: Time to check them, ensure they are being brushed, and have the vet take a peek. ABC News has a great video and check list here for dog dental care.
- Do a double check and ensure the dog’s food is fresh and properly stored. Just as we wouldn’t want to eat stale food (nor is it safe), the same holds true for our pooches. We found some good dog food and treat storage tips.
- Sales galore: Be a bargain hound and on the lookout for early bird sales, online specials and general holiday shopping discounts from now through year’s end. Our fur-ends at All Things Dog Blog and Dogtipper are having a fun and cost-savings Twitter party on Black Friday, aptly named “#BarkFriday.” Check out the fun and RSVP here. Those who RSVP and attend can win prizes, too!
- Bedding redo: Is it time for new filler for the dog bed? Be sure and launder Fido’s bedding/linens to keep them clean and bacteria free.
- Plan a vet visit: Gone are the days of yearly checkups. Seeing the doc more than once a year is a good habit to get into.
- Play play and more time: Set at least a half hour twice a day for doggone fun. Fido needs to embrace his or her time with you and no better way than play.