Basic small dog care is much the same as for larger dogs, but owners need to make a few adjustments to best meet their small dog’s needs. Consider the following daily dog care routines, and how they’ve adapted to meet the needs of your pint-sized pup.
Feeding Your Small Dog
Naturally, you’re going to feed your dog daily, but the standard-size kibble at the grocery store may be too large for your small dog to eat comfortably. You’ll need to be sure to buy a kibble designed to fit his smaller mouth (these are easy to find among the premium dog food brands). Canned soft foods are also perfectly suitable for your small dog.
Containing Your Small Dog
All dogs need exercise and a safe place to potty outdoors, and a fenced-in yard provides all the security they need, right? Not necessarily when it comes to small dogs. A fence that adequately holds a bigger dog may have gaps large enough for a small dog to fit between or under, allowing him to escape. Fences also can’t provide overhead protection from large hawks, which sadly have been known to carry small dogs and puppies away. A covered kennel run might better meet your small dog’s needs.
Training Your Small Dog
Small dogs aren’t any harder to train than large dogs, yet the consensus of many pet experts is that many of them end up spoiled. No matter if he fits in a purse or a pocket, your small dog still sees the world in terms of pack behavior, and if you’re not leading the pack, he is. It’s a wise idea to make sure your small dog is thoroughly house-trained, no matter how small and inconsequential the mess might seem when he misses. Dog experts also suggest you make your small dog work for you, to keep him responsive to your rules. Have him sit or do tricks before you give him a tasty treat or even his meal.
Grooming Your Small Dog
Small dog care includes some special grooming needs you’ll need to keep in mind. Small dogs require more frequent nail trimming than larger dogs because they typically spend less time on rough surfaces wearing them down. You’ll also need to brush your small dog’s teeth twice a week if you’re feeding a soft canned food diet.
As you can see, small dog care largely follows the same route as care for any other sized dog. The differences may seem like minor details, but paying attention to them can make a big impact when it comes to meeting your small dog’s special needs.