Your pet doesn’t know about all of our traditions. Granted, your dog might notice if you stop coming home at 5:05 because you’re off to the gym every day after work, but they don’t know that it’s January 1st or what that new attitude really means to you. Maybe it’s time to teach them.
Invite them to join your resolutions and help you keep them by creating goals that involve your pets directly.
You’ll be accountable to someone who won’t get in the way of your success, and you’ll be helping them keep healthy habits, too! Try it out this year, starting tonight. These are simple resolutions, so accomplishing them can almost be a guarantee.
Some examples of the best New Year’s resolutions for pet owners:
More (Or Longer) Walks. For dog owners, this one’s ideal. Taking your dog for three walks per day instead of two (or five instead of four, or 30 minutes at a time instead of 10—you can adapt this for your normal routine) will tire you both out, helping you both sleep better and effectively reducing some behaviors that accompany extra energy (or lessened bladder space).
Another choice might be to keep your daily routine the same, but add in two hikes per week. Determine your goal by considering what’s actually attainable. Smaller is better!
Better Meals. If you want to eat better and are making changes to your diet, ask your cat and dog to do the same. While you prepare your better meals, prepare theirs, as well. Each time you research a nutritional need, find corresponding information concerning your pet’s diet. Drawing these parallels will remind you how important a good diet is for them and keep your own meal plan on track.
More Playtime. Your pets need attention in addition to exercise. It’s nice that you feed your cat well, but what about playing with him? Grab a couple of toys and set aside time three times a week (or another concrete number or length of time of your choice) and stick to that goal. Bonding time will de-stress you both. A tip? Turn off electronics to give it your all.
More Learning. When we don’t use our brains, they do the same thing our bodies do without use—deteriorate. The same is true for our pets’ brains. If you want both of you to stay sharp and healthy, a class is a great activity. Try an agility or obedience course for your pup. You could even take a “how to bond with my cat” class through your local humane society!
More Regular Check-ups. OK, you might be a pet owner who keeps all vet appointments (for both cat and dog!) and never misses a check-up. But if you aren’t, this resolution is one you should both stick to. If you make a doctor’s appointment for yourself, make a vet appointment for your pet at the same time. It’s a good rule of thumb to be sure you’re both getting the healthcare you need.
More Brushing—and Smiling. Dental health is hugely important to your pet’s total health. It’s important to your own, too! So follow the tip from above and get your pet’s teeth checked whenever you get your own cleaned, or at least at the same frequency. That seems fair. Also, be sure to brush between cleanings. Just tape a picture of your cat’s smile to your bathroom mirror, so every time you hit the sink, you’ll have a friendly reminder!
What resolutions have you made for your pets? Did we miss a great tip? Share yours on our Facebook page!