When the New Year hits, it’s typical for humans to reflect on themselves and ways they can improve moving forward – and we think people should do that on behalf of their pets, too. As the ones in charge of our pet’s well being, we think the New Year is the perfect time to start establishing healthier habits – for the both of you! Below are some of the basics and tips to give you a boost.
- More Exercise – Physical activity is a key contributor to health and wellbeing, making this a resolution you can both benefit from. Our advice is to start small, opt for two or three half-hour walks per week and work your way up to longer distances or more frequency. And who says you have to walk?! Get creative! You can start running, swimming, snowshoeing, or even canoeing with your dog (just make sure they get out and swim a bit!)
- Eat Better – It’s a sad fact that over half of pets in the U.S. are overweight or obese and, obviously, their diet plays a big part in that. Take this opportunity to do a little research into optimal diets for your breed, then read the label on their food to ensure they’re receiving what they need (think single source protein and easy-to-digest ingredients.) Even more important is portion control; we recommend feeding slightly less than the recommended feeding if you’re someone who treats your pet… we further recommend feeding even less if your pet doesn’t engage in a moderate amount of physical activity regularly.
- Train – Think of training as your pet’s education, the more they have the more confident and capable they’re going to be. Plus, beyond their mental well being, you’ll be a happier pet owner with a well-behaved and attentive companion. Keep training sessions relatively short, about 15-30 minutes, and start small with things like ‘sit’, ‘stay’, and ‘watch me’. Remember to mind your patience (this is supposed to be fun!) and, once you both get the hang of it, we think you’ll really enjoy this bond-enriching ritual. Always end a good training session with the original dog training treat.
If you have any tips or unique resolutions for the New Year, we’d love to hear them on our Facebook page!