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Dumbest things dog owners do

By Dr. Jon www,

Most dog owners are great. But sometimes even the best dog owners will make mistakes. Most of the time, the people involved are well intentioned but misinformed. Here are three mistakes dog owners often make.

The mistakes might seem small but the results can be quite serious.

• Self-medicating your dog - When your dog is sick, never give your dog any medication without speaking to your veterinarian. This is really dangerous. Over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen and aspirin are toxic to dogs in relatively small doses. Don't medicate your dog without the advice of your veterinarian.

• Using flea medications improperly - Flea medications are a great way to control fleas, but you must be careful to use the product only as directed. Follow the safety guidelines and never ever give dog flea medications to cats.

• No ID tag - Dogs can run out the door, break free from their leash or escape through an unlatched gate. My friends' dog ran out the front door a few months ago. They searched and searched for hours and eventually they found him - but they were lucky.

Did you know less than 5 percent of all lost pets are reunited with their owners? It may even be a low as 2 or 3 percent. This is a terribly sad statistic - especially because many of those poor pets could have been returned to their owners if only they had been wearing an ID tag.

Remember, don't give any medications or flea products to your dog without your veterinarian's approval and keep an ID tag on your dog at all times.

You just never know what can happen.