Five things Every Responsible Dog Owner Should Do

Updated 18 April 2024
Read time: 4 mins
article author
Written by Elle Padgham
Lead Copywriter

We all love our pets and the joy they provide us is immeasurable. The best way we can show our pets that we care, is to take great care of them. This means being a responsible owner and prioritising their happiness, health and wellbeing.


As much as your pooch may enjoy a heated and padded bed or a day trip to the doggy spa, they will benefit much more from the ‘boring’ things like routine veterinary care, consistent training and high-quality food, so here are our TOP 5 things that every dog owner should do. Can you tick all 5 boxes?


 1. Don’t forget about those vaccines. Most owners know their puppies need a set of vaccines before they can go outside. However, it is not uncommon for owners to leave their older dogs unvaccinated, sometimes for years at a time. While not every vaccine needs to be administered annually, Leptospirosis (core) and Kennel Cough (non core) do. This yearly trip to the vet also provides a great opportunity for a full check over and weigh-in and allows you to discuss any health or behavioural issues with your vet. 

Following your yearly trip to the vet for vaccinations and a thorough check-up, thinking about safeguarding your furry friend's health with comprehensive pet insurance is a must. Just like humans, pets can unexpectedly fall ill or have an accident, leading to expensive vet bills. Pet insurance offers peace of mind by covering a portion of these expenses, ensuring your beloved pooch receives the care they need without causing financial stress. With different coverage options available, including accident-only, illness, and comprehensive plans - pet insurance means you can tailor protection to suit your pet's needs, and your budget!


 2. Microchips are a must. It is the law in the UK for all dogs to be microchipped, meaning they can be traced back to their owner at all times. This ensures you would be reunited with your dog if they were ever stolen or if they go missing. If unsure if your dog has a chip, ask your vet to scan them the next time you’re in. If your pet needs to be chipped, this can be done during a consult and costs from £10-25.


Top Tip: Don’t forget to update your microchip details if you move home or change your phone number.


 3. Continue with your dog’s training, even beyond their puppy years. A happy dog is one who knows what is expected from them. Dogs truly thrive when they have a set routine and a predictable training programme. Try to involve the whole family and to establish that everyone is on the same page when it comes to ‘rules’. Importantly, always reward good behaviour with lots of verbal praise and some treats. This is true even for senior dogs; it’s not just puppies who need to be shown appreciation.


4. Offer a high quality diet. While premium diets will cost more, if you can afford them, they are worth the investment. Not only will your dog appreciate the fresh flavours, there are health benefits too. Diets like Pooch & Mutt use quality ingredients to support optimal health; ensuring a shiny coat, better stool quality and a settled gut. Premium diets are generally supplemented with ingredients such as probiotics and joint supportive ingredients, keeping your dog in tip top shape.


 5. Be their advocate. Where you can, try to understand your dog’s needs and to ‘be their voice’. Some example of this would include:

  • Using a bright yellow collar and lead that say ‘Nervous Dog’ on them when out walking, so a fearful dog can enjoy their walk without lots of other dogs approaching them.
  • Reading their body language and understanding they get stressed and worked up when the post man comes to the front door, so you know to have them playing a game of fetch in the backyard at that time each day.
  • Recognising they feel nauseous in the car, so ensuring they only go in it when they need to and that they aren’t fed a heavy meal beforehand. For some, anti-nausea medicine may be required.
  • Really, any act that acknowledges what our dogs are feeling and helps them live a smoother life.


While the five things discussed above may not seem ground-breaking, it is the little things that can make a big difference in the long run.

Comments (2)

I do not agree with those vaccines. When i was a child our dog wasn’t vaccinated and lived a very long healthy life. So for this reason I do not vaccinate him. Today I see dogs with horrible health conditions, arthritis, joint pain, cancer, lumps, gut issues, and I could stay here forever until I say it all. I wonder where these came from??? So, no! I’m not a bad owner because I don’t give the vaccines which has so many side effects and harmful for the gut and when the gut is damaged then all other conditions comes. And no, Mt child is not vaccinated either. Guess what… he is the healthiest of all children.

Erika - Mar 07 2022
Pooch Admin

Hi @Erika! Thanks for your comment, it is entirely your decision whether you decide to vaccinate your dog, and we are happy to hear that your dog is healthy and happy. The vast majority of vets and canine health advocates will advise vaccinating your pet. This is because they frequently see unvaccinated dogs who become very unwell or pass away from diseases such as Parvovirus and Leptospirosis that are entirely preventable with a vaccine. It’s worth noting that dogs will have suffered from the types of health conditions you have mentioned before vaccines were invented. These types of health conditions appear in both vaccinated and unvaccinated dogs.

Team Pooch - Mar 08 2022

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