An Introduction to Natural Pet Care

Natural pet care isn't as complicated as you might think. For the most part, it involves making sure that your pet eats a balanced, healthy diet, gets plenty of exercise, and receives appropriate preventative medical care. Here are some important tips to help you care for your pet, naturally.

Your Pet Needs Veterinary Care

The most important way you can protect your pet's health is by preventing disease before it occurs. Your dog or cat needs all of his vaccinations on the appropriate schedule, to prevent deadly viral diseases such as rabies, distemper, feline leukemia, and feline AIDS. Your dog or cat needs yearly veterinary check ups, and these exams should be accompanied by dental cleanings.

If your pet does become ill, don't attempt to make a diagnosis on your own. Your vet is trained to evaluate symptoms, diagnose illness, and prescribe treatment. Natural pet products can be of great benefit to your dog or cat, but they are no substitute for medical care.

Diet And Exercise Are Crucial to Health

Your dog or cat needs plenty of exercise to stay healthy. Dogs should be walked daily; dogs with high energy levels may need to be walked more often or at greater length. Both dogs and cats should be engaged in play. Not only does play help your pet get exercise; it also helps the two of you bond and reduces stress for you both.

Make sure your pet receives a balanced diet. One of the most valuable natural pet products on the market is natural dog or cat food. While conventional foods won't harm your dog, they aren't as filling or as tasty. Neither do they contain dietary supplements, such as omega fatty acids, that can improve your dog or cat's health.

Vitamin Supplements and Nutraceuticals

If your dog or cat has eaten a healthy balanced diet throughout his life, then he has no need of an additional vitamin supplement. Puppies and kittens should eat food designed for puppies and kittens; elderly animals should eat food designed for seniors. Adult animals should eat food for adults. Prepared foods already contain all of the nutrients and vitamins your dog or cat needs.

However, if you know your pet has suffered nutritional deficiencies, or has suffered them in the past, then you might want to consider a vitamin supplement. If you prepare your pet's food yourself at home, then do your research to make sure his diet contains all of the appropriate vitamins and nutrients. Add a vitamin supplement to your pet's diet if necessary. Some vitamins, such as vitamin C, can also help animals recover from illness.

Nutraceuticals, such as glucosamine, can be of immense benefit to the treatment of illness and conditions such as arthritis. Systemic conditions, such as liver disease, are routinely treated with natural remedies such as milk thistle. While many nutraceuticals can form a regular part of your pet's diet, they needn't be solely used for the treatment of chronic illness. Echinacea, for instance, can be used temporarily to help your dog overcome illness; ginger can be used to soothe temporary digestive upsets.