Each January marks the start of a new year and this particular year, a new decade! Many people start out with high expectations for themselves but over time, motivation can dwindle. Having an accountabilibuddy is key to accomplishing the goals you set out for yourself. Who better to help you out along the way than your most loyal supporter? Your dog! We’re going to highlight 10 New Year’s resolutions that you and your pup can work toward together, so there’s no fear of facing these challenges alone. Enjoy a successful, accomplished, fulfilling, joyful, and healthy 2020!
Sometimes spicing up your wardrobe can make a real difference mentally. A new coat or pair of pants, even if it’s from a thrift store and is just new to you, can bring some brightness into your life. Switching up your outfits or just finding a new favorite accessory sometimes is the key to unleashing a new you. For your pup, you can treat them to a trip to the groomers, or set aside some time to give them a good ol' scrub a dub in the tub yourself. Also, picking up a new collar or leash is always fun. Mixing and matching to find that perfect combo just makes every dog walk feel like you’re strutting your stuff on the catwalk.
Most dogs love a good walk and most people love spending quality time with their pets. Why not do both and cross off one of your new year’s resolutions? Most of us would benefit from a bit more physical activity, and adding 5-10 minutes onto each walk can be a great way to get you and your pup feeling fitter, healthier and happier! Get out there and get moving!
If you’re feeling like a night out on the town, you can ‘hit da club’ and if you’re feeling a bit peckish you can chow down on a club sandwich, but those don’t quite scratch that itch like a real club does. A real club meaning a gathering of folks looking to spend quality time discussing, debating and engaging in a shared interest. And why wouldn’t that interest be dogs? There are many different kinds of dog clubs scattered around the world. You can join a wide variety including conformation, agility, obedience, scent work, performance, tracking and more. Your dog will love meeting new pups, and you’ll enjoy meeting new dog people! If you don’t find a club that you like, you can always start one yourself! How do you think all the other clubs got started to begin with?
Volunteering to help those less fortunate is a noble pursuit. It requires compassion, time and effort but is incredibly rewarding. If you love spending time with animals and want to feel like you’re giving back to your local community in a meaningful way, volunteering at a local animal shelter is a great opportunity. You’re spending time with animals and being a wonderful human being. Win-win! Another avenue of accomplishing this goal if you have a good-natured pooch, is to train them to become a therapy dog. This lets you provide comfort to those who need it most, while bonding and spending time with your dog. Let the world see your dog for the hero they truly are.
Getting a more wholesome helping of the food pyramid is an important facet that most people lack in their lives. We’re busy 21st century humans and it’s hard to set aside the time to make sure we’re eating healthy. But fueling up with a health-conscious, balanced diet is important. Especially if it means that you can take on the day and be the best pet parent you can be for your pup. You can also take into consideration the food that you're feeding your pet. Check in with your Veterinarian about what they’d recommend for a healthy diet. Do some research on your own and find out what would best benefit your pup too!
What’s a great way to meet new people and new pups? Go to a dog park! Throw a ball around, breath in the air, have some fun, and sniff some new butts! Well at least let your dog sniff some new butts. For people, shake some hands. Introduce yourself to the folks there, because you might find some good ones. After all, everyone at a dog park has something in common, they’re all dog people! And dog people are the best people.
It’s always good to get a checkup every once in a while to make sure you’re in good health. It’s important for your dog too. Regular checkups are important to monitor your health, even if you feel good. The same goes for your dog! Regular visits to the vet are necessary to make sure your pup is happy and healthy. As communicative as they are, they don’t quite have the ability to directly say, “Human, I am uncomfortable and I believe this is due to a physical malady. Can we please make an appointment to see the Veterinarian?”
If you’re looking for a simple, easy, weekend getaway, consider bringing your pup. There are hotels, as well as homestays that are dog friendly and within driving distance of most cities. Even if you’re not going anywhere special, it’s nice to treat yourself to some new surroundings every once in a while. And who better to join you then your pup? It’s so much easier making friends in new places when you have a social cheat code like a dog. If a weekend getaway isn’t something you can make happen, you can still bring that spontaneity into your life on a smaller scale. Switch things up! It doesn’t have to be anything dramatic, but it can be something simple for yourself, like rearranging your furniture to add some new energy to a room. For your dog, maybe move their water and food bowls or perhaps change up where you take walks. If you have a few routes that are your regular go-to’s, explore new neighborhoods. Getting new kinds of toys and treats is also a fun idea. This could be fun for you but especially for your dog!
If you let yourself stagnate mentally, life can feel a bit stale. Stale bread is edible, but wouldn’t you prefer a fresh baked loaf of homemade sourdough? Learning a new skill or picking up a new hobby like practicing an instrument, learning a new language, making art, or baking bread helps engage your brain in new and enjoyable ways. The same can be said for your dog. They might not be begging you to sign them up for a pottery class but teaching your dog a few new tricks is a fun and rewarding experience for both pet and person.
Some people are really bad at getting a healthy amount of sleep. A lot of people in fact. There’s stress, anxiety, your phone, TV, that wacky neighbor who has a one-sided screaming match with their refrigerator at 4am. You know who doesn’t care about any of those things? Your dog. This is something on this list that your dog likely doesn’t need any help with at all. But why not let them help you? Establishing a sleep routine with your dog can be a magnificent way to bond, and to ensure you get a healthy amount of sleep. Also dogs are the ideal alarm clock. Waking up to morning kisses never hurt anyone.
We get that this list doesn’t apply to everyone. If reading these resolutions was a bit painful because you have a dog-shaped hole in your heart, then maybe your resolution for this year should just be to get a dog! If there’s something preventing you from having one, then work toward overcoming that blockade. Having a dog in your life is a distinct joy and on its own, can meet a lot of typical New Year’s resolutions like; I want to be happier, I want to make more friends, I want to help out my community, I want to find love. Adopting a dog accomplishes all of these goals and more.
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