You may have made New Year’s resolutions for your own health when we entered 2020 a few weeks ago. But truthfully, you are probably concerned about the well-being of your entire family—and that includes your beloved companion animal. It is especially important to watch out for them because they cannot always communicate when something is wrong. Here are five tips to help ensure the health of your pet.

Book regular veterinarian appointments

Just like you would take yourself for a yearly physical, or your kids for check-ups when they’re feeling under the weather, you should also take your pet to a veterinarian on a semi-regular basis. In addition to examining their overall health, a veterinarian keeps track of your pet’s shots, heartworm prevention, possible medications, and other care they may need. They can also provide nutritional recommendations.

Feed them healthy food

Feeding your pet isn’t always as simple as purchasing the brands you see most in commercials. Allergies are actually quite common in pets, so it may be best to avoid certain formulas and varieties. You can also search laundry lists of snacks to keep them away from, including certain fruits, vegetables, nuts, and animal by-products.

Exercise them

It is so important to ensure certain animals—particularly dogs—get enough exercise all year round. As we have previously discussed, winter is no excuse not to ensure they continue to get some physical activity. While many pets are more sedentary by nature, be sure to give them all attention and toys to help keep them entertained and at least a little busy and stimulated throughout the day. You should also avoid letting “outdoor cats” wander outside alone.

Safely grooming them

Finding a reputable pet groomer is not be that difficult, but asking friends or online community groups can provide excellent options in terms of quality and geography. Your pets should have their fur and nails trimmed relatively often for the sake of their overall health. When it comes to oral hygiene, try toothbrushes and cleaners designed for pets, specific treats that allow them to self-clean, or professional plaque and tartar removal by your veterinarian.

Get pet insurance

While more of an optional suggestion on this list, when you have a pet, you may seriously want to consider investing in pet health insurance. There are various options available by different providers, so shop or ask around for recommendations. Like regular insurance, it is often a preventative measure that can be pricy, but worthwhile if and when you eventually need it. Some breeds have more medical issues than others and you could ultimately save yourself—and your pet—by having the protection.

For more tips on ensuring your pet’s health is on the right track, consult a trusted veterinarian. If you plan on travelling with your companion animal this year, contact Worldwide Animal Travel to take care of your pet’s travel arrangements!