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A nutritious, balanced diet is essential to keeping your dog healthy. Your pet depends on you for a safe and happy life. Here are some tips to help make it as easy as possible for both of you.

1. Understanding the Responsibility of Pet Ownership

There's nothing more endearing than a puppy. Many an owner has started out falling in love with two sweet, innocent eyes only to discover that some real work goes into keeping a pet healthy and happy. Be prepared for what you're committing to.

2. Choosing the Right Vet

There's more to owning a pet than providing love, exercise and proper nutrition. Regular check-ups with a veterinarian are essential to making sure your pet is as healthy as possible.

3. Keeping Weight in Check

By now we all know obesity is unhealthy. But do you know just how many health problems it can cause for your pet? There are ways to protect your pet by taking a proactive approach to keeping the weight off.

4. Maintaining Your Pet's Oral Health

Healthy teeth and fresh breath don't necessarily mean your pet's mouth is clean and bacteria-free. Oral care is a key component of your pet's overall health—a smart regimen can prevent the development of serious conditions.

5. A Shiny Coat: Nutrition Is Key

Nutrients such as protein, fat, vitamins and minerals are important players in the skin and coat health of dogs. To understand their role, it is necessary to start with understanding skin and hair. If your pet's diet doesn't contain adequate protein quantity and quality, hair may fall out, or become dry, weak and brittle.