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Owning and caring for a dog is great fun and immensely rewarding. But it's also a big responsibility. If you own or are responsible for a dog, even on a temporary basis, you're required under the Animal Welfare Act to care for them properly.
You should register your dog with a vet as soon as possible. Dogs require regular vaccinations and treatments such as worming.
Go to the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons to find a local vet.
The RSPCA offers a wide range of advice on caring for your dog such as:
For information on neutering, including the benefits for your pet, see dog neutering.
For information on worming your dog and toxocara see dog worming and toxocara.
Training your dog is part of responsible dog ownership. It provides important mental stimulation and is a great way to get to know each other. A well trained pet dog should be able to walk well on a lead and respond to simple commands such as "come" or "sit". Training allows you to bond with your dog and simple commands may help keep them safe when walking in busy areas or by roads.
Trainers registered with the Association of Pet Dog Trainers or with the Kennel Club should be able to provide you and your dog with the necessary training needs.
The RSPCA website gives good advice on how to choose a trainer that is suitable for you and your dog.
* If the dog is in immediate risk of serious injury or harm you should call 999.
Please note: we also do not have the power to investigate cases of organised dog fights (see the RSPCA - dog fights) or dogs abandoned in property or cars by their owners (see the Dogs Trust – hot cars).
If you require help with something in this section, please contact us.