It’s inevitable that we will make mistakes as dog parents. Sometimes we feed them the wrong foods or don’t walk them enough. Mistakes come with the territory. Dogs, like children, are crash courses in learning what not to do. But some mistakes you can only make once, and that’s because the results end up being fatal. Below is a list of activities you should never ever engage in with your dog as it puts them at great risk of injury and death.
Putting Dogs In The Bed Of The Truck
I wish I didn’t see this as often as I do, but it happens. Thankfully, the dogs usually seem to know how precarious their situation is and are generally pretty well behaved. But there’s always the one dog that’s overwhelmed by their situation. I see them rocking from side to side in the truck bed, trying to inspect the smells and catch the cars passing them. Thankfully, I’ve never seen this end in anything horrifying, but it happens often. Never do this. Never mind the risk of your dog jumping into traffic, even if you’re on the move. If you are ever in an accident, your dog stands a very high chance of being injured or killed. About 100,000 dogs die each year in accidents involving riding in the truck bed. If your dog absolutely must come with you, make room for them inside of the truck, or get a sitter. This is seriously irresponsible.
Walking Dogs Without A Leash
This isn’t just for your dog. This is to make people around you safe as well. Your dog may be well-trained and extraordinarily obedient, but you can’t account for all outside influences at any point in time. Some people have children and other pets that might not know how to behave around dogs, and by walking your dog without a leash you’ve ensured that should the worst happen, your pet cannot be restrained in the event of an emergency situation. If you want to let your dog off-leash, keep it to designated off-leash areas like dog parks.
Leaving Dogs Outside
While it’s true that many dogs love the outdoors, it’s cruel to leave them outside all of the time. Many breeds of dogs no longer have the tools or instincts to keep safe in extreme weather. Humans have literally evolved it out of them through selective breeding. So no, your Chihuahua-Yorkie mix will not do just fine in the blizzard or thunderstorm that’s rolling through tomorrow. That’s not all. Leaving dogs outside all day can lead to anxious, aggressive, or anti-social behavior. Bring them in the house. If you don’t want your dog in the house, don’t get a dog. It’s just that simple. Pets bring an undetermined amount of automatic mess making and destruction into your house at any given point in time. If you don’t want to deal with that, don’t have a pet. You probably shouldn’t bother with children either.
Being Mean To Dogs For Laughs
I see this more often with cats than with dogs where the internet is concerned, but there are frequent offenders for all animals in general here. Don’t scare your cat or dog to the point of abject terror because you think their reaction is funny. Your pet trusts you, and doing this can do irrevocable harm to your relationship with your animal. It’s also unnecessarily cruel in general. There’s plenty of funny things you can do with your dog if you want to post some silly videos with them. Scaring them (on purpose) should never even be an option.
Leaving Dogs In The Car
This is not only irresponsible but dangerous. Hundreds of dogs die every year from people leaving them in hot cars, and yet people still continue to do this. More than likely it stems from ignorance than malice, but that doesn’t save our dogs after the fact. Please, please, please don’t do this, even for a minute. The heat in a car during a hot day magnifies at an exponential rate. Just a few minutes in a car can be lethal for your dog. Thankfully, numerous states are now making it legal to break car windows to free dogs that are trapped in vehicles, but we still have a long way to go in terms of educating people on the dangers of this act.
Can you think of any dangerous things dog owners do that I might have missed? Let me know in the comments below!
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