Now that the new year has arrived, we thought it would be a good idea to make up a check list of things that would help you get through the coming year and make sure your hound is safe, healthy, and happy.
_____Always be vigilant and look for signs that your hound is not feeling well. Consider a medical reason for sudden behavior changes first.
_____Use heartworm/flea and tick preventative; add a reminder to your calendar monthly so you don’t forget.
_____Check gate latches daily; place a sign on gates warning contractors or visitors to keep gates closed. Lock gates that are not used daily.
_____Check fence lines for holes and depressions where a hound can crawl or slip through. Make repairs.
_____Check all doors to make sure they close correctly or don’t fly open accidentally. Add a baby gate to doors where a hound can jump out accidentally (i.e., screened doors) when you come and go.
_____Check the yard often to make sure nothing harmful has been dropped or thrown in it that your hound could eat.
_____Make sure your hound does not get too cold or hot outdoors. Be watchful for signs of distress when you are outdoors with your hound.
_____Wash and change water in water bowls frequently and make sure there is always a fresh supply of clean water available.
_____When changing your hound’s food, make sure it’s done slowly and wait an entire month before changing his/her diet again.
_____Check vaccination records and make sure all are up to date; add the date the shots are due on your calendar so that you can make an appointment to see your vet.
_____Make sure that your hound’s teeth are clean; brush teeth often or have their teeth cleaned once a year; check for bad breath which might indicate dental problems.
_____Check collars monthly for wear and tear and loose hardware. Replace worn collars.
_____At all times, keep your own ID tag as well as the FFGR, Inc. ID tag on your hound(s).
_____Inspect leashes often and replace leashes that have slits in them or are fraying.
_____Make sure no tags are on the D-ring that tightens the collar. Use a tag collar or place tags elsewhere where they can’t tighten the collar if they get caught in anything.
_____Check weekly to ensure the collar is adjusted to fit snuggly. Test by bringing the collar up to behind the ears. Pull D-ring to tighten collar. You should be able to place two fingers inside the loop at the dog’s neck.
_____Inspect all toys often and throw away any that are torn. Keep fiberfill from beds and toys away from your hound so it can’t be ingested.
_____When repairing plush toys, use only upholstery or breakable thread; don’t use nylon or polyester thread that, when swallowed, can be caught in the digestive tract.
_____Throw away all rubber toys that can be easily chewed up into small pieces and swallowed.
_____Regularly inspect bones and rawhides; throw away all small and old pieces; replace with new ones.
_____Keep your hound’s nails clipped; don’t allow them to get so long that your hound has a hard time walking. Adhere to a schedule for nail clipping.
_____Check ears monthly to make sure they are clean; watch for scratching and pawing at the ears and head shaking (sign of infection).
_____Check constantly to make sure that any cleaning products, medications, etc. are high up on shelves and out of the way of your hound. Keep counters clear of same.
_____Put together a contingency plan NOW for boarding your hounds, etc. in case an emergency comes up and you have to leave your home immediately.
_____Consider NOW what would happen to your hound(s) in case you get sick, die, have an accident, lose your home, etc. Give the information to someone you trust or contact our group for help.
_____Love your hounds as they love you!!!!!!