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Southlake Animal Hospital

3570 E. Lincoln Hwy
Merrillville, IN 46410

Caring for a Small Dog

March 15 2021

Do you have a smaller dog, such as a toy breed or a smaller terrier? We love pups of all shapes and sizes. Many little dogs were bred to be companion dogs. It’s in their nature to be super cuddly and affectionate. However, these guys have slightly different needs than big pooches do. A Crown Point, IN vet discusses caring for a little pooch below.


Exercise

It’s very easy for small dogs to become obese. Even giving your pet a few calories too much each day can lead to weight gain at a rate of about a pound a year. That’s a lot for a little dog! Obesity will also put additional strain on his bones and joints.


Training

Training is just as important for little dogs as it is for big ones. Fido may not be as much of a danger to others as a big dog would be, but he is still prone to running into trouble. Make sure your furry bff knows and obeys simple doggy obedience commands, like Sit, Stay, and Come .


Gear

You should always use a harness, rather than a collar, on a smaller dog. It’s very easy to accidentally choke Fido or cut off his air if he is wearing a collar.


Steps

Even jumping off a couch or into your lap can be dangerous for Fido, especially as he grows older. Set out pet ramps or stairs for your canine buddy.


Products

When shopping for Fido, stick with toys, food, and treats made specifically for little dogs. He could hurt himself with things that were made for larger pooches!


Weather

Many smaller dogs, particularly those with short fur, get cold very easily in winter, especially if they have to walk in snow. If your pooch has a thin coat, get him comfy sweaters for frigid weather.


Puppyproofing

Puppyproofing is just as important—if not more so—for little dogs as it is for big ones. However, with Fido being so low to the ground, you’ll need to take extra precautions. It’s not a bad idea to get down on your hands and knees and take a look around from your pet’s vantage.


Dental Care

Little dogs often have dental issues. Overcrowding is fairly common. Ask your vet for tips on keeping Fido’s chopper’s healthy.

 

Please contact us, your Crown Point, IN veterinary clinic, anytime. We’re always happy to help! 

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