10 Ways to Simplify Your Pet Care Routine

Make Pet Care a Breeze

Put your phone to work. Use the calendar or alarm on your smartphone to alert you that it’s time to give your pet his medications. This is especially useful if your pet takes several medications throughout the day or if you have multiple pets on medication. Use apps to track your pet’s health care details, vet and grooming appointments; map dog walks; find pet-friendly businesses; teach tricks; and more. Do a Web or Pinterest search for “pet apps” to find them.

Keep ears clean. If you have a dog with long ears, use a hair scrunchie to gently hold them out of the way while he eats. You can also tuck the ears up beneath a plastic shower cap, or purchase or make a snood.

Slow speedy eaters. To keep your dog or cat from gobbling his food, spread it in a single layer on a shallow plate or rimmed cookie sheet. He’ll have to slow down to get it all up.

Keep your cat off your computer. Working from home with a cat who loves to loll on your keyboard? Offer him an even better option by flipping over a box lid or placing a shallow box on an out-of-the-way spot on your desk. He gets to hang out in a box — cats love that — and still supervise your work.

Simplify teeth cleaning. Do you dread brushing your pet's teeth? Try this: Squeeze some pet toothpaste onto your pet's favorite chew toy — ideally one with ridges or nubs — and hand it over to him. He gets a tasty toy and cleaner teeth. Do this two or three times a day. It's not as effective as brushing, but it's better than nothing.

Bonus: Make outings extra safe. A carabiner on your dog’s leash makes it easy to attach the leash to a table or other object when the two of you are at a café for your weekend latte and bagel. This can help prevent your dog from wandering — or running — off before it's time to leave.

What are your favorite pet hacks? Share them in the comments!

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