Spend more time with your dog.
Ah, the New Year. A new beginning, a shining dawn, and as good a time as any to change. So, you think to yourself, what resolutions should I set for myself this year? Well, as a dog owner, there are quite a few things to do for your pet. After all, our lovable companions can be a handful, and we sometimes forget just how much they rely on us to tend to their health and happiness. On that note, here are some vital New Year’s Resolutions for you and your dogs.
1. Give your dog a health check
This is the most important resolution you can make for your pet. Go and schedule a health check for your dog with your local vet. Your dog’s health is an absolute priority. So, you should make sure you know exactly how your furry friend is doing. A clean bill of health for your dog ensures that they will be there for you when you need it most.
Generally, pups should have a checkup about once a month, while dogs closer to adulthood only need a visit about twice or three times a year. To be sure, though, ask your vet when you should schedule your next visit.
2. Take care of your dog’s hygiene
Among other things, your vet should be able to tell you if your dog is living a clean, hygienic lifestyle. This is a good opportunity to get your dog’s teeth cleaned, and to start a regimen to keep your dog’s breath from smelling unusually bad. Dog breath is one thing, you don’t want it to smell terrible. You should also start a program of dog baths, using products that are safe for your pet’s breed and age, to make sure that your companion does not get too dirty and catch any easily preventable disease. As a bonus, your dog’s coat will be soft as ever, perfect for playful wrestling and cuddling!
3. Make sure your dog eats healthy
On that note, your vet should also have advice on what foods are healthy for your dog. Firstly, make sure that you feed your dog age appropriate foods. At each stage of their lives, dogs need different amounts and kinds of nutrients, to help them grow and stay healthy. Generally, good nutrition will help keep your dog’s muscles healthy and strong, keep your dog’s fur naturally healthy and shiny, and keep your pet’s skin in good condition, free from itching rashes and dryness. Your pet will also benefit from healthy digestion. A good, healthy diet is of extra importance if your dog is carrying puppies of her own, ensuring that both the mother and pups stay healthy throughout the pregnancy and birth. Lastly, a healthy diet boosts your pet’s immunity and helps to prevent chronic disease.
4. If your dog is overweight, put the dog on a Diet
Now that we’ve talked about healthy eating, we should also mention the other type of diet. You know the one. With the capital D. Again, your vet should be able to tell you if you’ve been overfeeding your furry companion. Like with human beings, obesity can be very dangerous to dogs. Among other things, obesity can result in breathing problems, high blood pressure, diabetes, liver disease, and even increased risk of developing cancer. So, it’s probably not a good idea to give your dog that extra treat, even if he flashes you with those puppy eyes.
Work with your vet to develop a good diet and exercise regimen to lose weight and keep that weight off. Your dog will benefit enormously from this, leading to a happier life for both you and your companion.
5. Spend more time with your dog
This one seems like a no-brainer. Of course, you should spend time with your dog! But, like everyone, you sometimes get too busy and may forget your little friend. So, whether it’s training a new puppy or just spending time with an old paw, make sure to regularly schedule time to spend with your furry friend.
This will improve your relationship with your dog, and you will feel all the better for it. Spending time with your dog can help you work through a rough time in your life, and vastly improves your mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing.
6. Take care of your own health
Okay, okay, this one isn’t exactly for your pet. But still, if you aren’t around for your dog, who will be? It’s important that you take care of yourself so that you can take good care of your pet.
If you smoke, this may be another reason to try and quit, since the second-hand smoke is harmful for your dog and if anything bad happens to you, your ability to take care of your dog may be affected.
In short, if you suffer, your dog will suffer, so you should try and keep your own health up.
7. Donate to a dog shelter
Now, how ’bout you help out your local animal shelter? Often, shelters are strapped for cash, and so they can’t always help all of the animals that they take in. So, whether it’s money or a helping hand, whether it’s regular or just a once off thing, see what you can do for your local shelter. Every little bit helps, and no effort goes to waste.
So, another year begins, another set of resolutions are written. Just remember to include your furry friends. Take your dogs for a checkup at your local vet, make sure you feed your dog healthily and have a good exercise routine, and keep your dog clean. Take care of yourself, and spend more time with your dog, and soon you’ll feel the full emotional and mental benefits that come with taking care of a dog. While these are just suggestions, remember to write your own resolutions, remember to stick to them, and remember to take care of yourself and your canine companion!