Below I have listed my tips for all pet owners, whether you live with a special needs pet or not. I hope you find them useful!

Adopting a Pet - There are millions of animals that need good homes. You can help them by adopting pets from animal shelters or rescue groups, or supporting groups that work to help animals, like my friends at Little Shelter.

Regular Trips to the Veterinarian - It's important for pets to see the doctor regularly, just as it is  for people. Regular checkups can find little health problems before they become big health problems, and also make sure all medications and vaccinations are up-to-date.

Water is Important! - It's just as important for pets to have something to drink as it is for people. Pets should always have fresh, clean water available.

Experience is the Best Teacher - Pets should have opportunities to meet many people, and other animals, when they are young. Being introduced to different things helps a young animal learn to deal with new things. Trips in the car (in a carrier), meeting new people, and meeting other animals makes it easier for a pet to deal with these things if it becomes necessary later in life. An animal that has not had these experiences is more likely to be afraid of them when it grows up.

Holidays Can Be Fun for Pets, Too! - Most people really enjoy the winter holidays, and pets can, too. It's important, though, to make sure that your holiday celebrations don't endanger your pets. Electric lights, wrapping paper, tinsel, glass decorations, and many more things can be very dangerous for pets. By keeping your pets safety in mind, everyone can enjoy the holidays!

Traveling Can Be Dangerous for Pets! - I like to travel, and so do many other pets, but traveling can be dangerous. Pets can easily fall out of cars, off of boats, or out of the back of a pickup truck on the highway (my friend Bob has seen this happen)! Please be very careful with your pets when you travel. Talking to your veterinarian about travel safety is a good idea, and you can also check web sites such as these:

Exercise Is Important - Exercise is just as important for your pet as it is for you. It helps to keep your pet happy and healthy. Give your pets toys and room to play with them and they will often keep themselves entertained, but they'll enjoy it more if you join in. That'll help keep you happy and healthy, too, and create a stronger bond between you and your pets.

Spaying and neutering pets and feral animals is good for everyone - There are too many animals that can't find homes. Spaying (for females) and neutering (for males) helps to keep populations down and ensure that there are less homeless animals. It also helps decrease the spread of disease and cruelty to animals.

Take My Picture! - This might sound like a strange pet care tip, but take your pets' photo often. It could be important if your pet gets lost (please don't let that happen). It's also fun (most of the time) and will help keep your pet's memory alive when he or she is gone. You can also show off your pets better!

Know What You Are Getting Into - Be sure that everyone in your house understands and respects the needs of any animal, special needs or otherwise, BEFORE you make it part of your family. This is one of the most important steps to keeping everyone happy and healthy.


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