It’s a new year, which often signals a fresh start and time to think about your goals for the next 12 months. But here’s a fresh twist on the New Year’s Resolution–why not kill two birds (not really) and make some commitments to your pet parenting and your personal health and wellness? Read on for great ideas for resolutions for you and your pet.
#1 Get Moving
We know, we know. It’s at the top of everyone’s resolution list. But isn’t it more appealing to exercise with your dog, rather than in a gym? Commit to upping your daily walk game – but don’t limit yourself to just walking. Throw in some intervals (walk or run faster for short periods) or some games of catch or even a set of push-ups. It’s good for you, it breaks up the monotony of the walk, and your dog will love time spent with you.
#2 What’s Up Doc?
Chances are, you have health screenings or doctor’s appointments you should make in the New Year. The same is true for your pet. Yearly examinations by your veterinarian are important to good preventive care. Vet visits are also the perfect time to ask for advice, talk about nutrition, or get an expert opinion on any behavioral issues.
#3 Think Outside the Walk
Daily walks are great, but consider going a little bigger. Try hiking, trail running, skijoring (combination of cross country skiing and dog sledding), snow shoeing, kayaking or any other activity that gets you outside and moving! It’s a great way to bond and the physical activity and mental health benefits are great for both of you.
#4 Primp and Polish
No one wants a stinky pet. Regular grooming – bathing, nail clipping, brushing teeth and coat – will make your pet more pleasant to be around and (bonus!) it’s healthier for your pet. Plus, all that nurturing and daily grooming is a great bonding activity for you and your pet. But pay attention – any skin and coat problems that don’t resolve with regular grooming, please see your veterinarian.
#5 All Work and No Play….
…makes pet parents very dull. More play time is a fun and positive resolution for people and pets! It’s a great stress reliever for you and who doesn’t embrace unconditional love and attention? Cats love the thrill of chasing a laser toy or catnip toys or fetch toys, and dogs are happy with most any game, like fetch, tug of war, hide and seek. It all works!
Lastly, it’s a New Year so don’t forget to take a moment to be thankful for all you have, especially the beautiful and loving pets who enrich your life every day.