Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Year’s Resolutions for You and Your Pet

Throughout December, most of us spend our time celebrating the holidays and reflecting on the past year’s fortunes and follies. There’s nothing like this annual reminiscence to inspire us to change our bad habits and pick up good ones. So this year, as you look to start the year out on the good paw, keep your pet in mind too. You’re not the only one whose life could use some improvements.

1. Pick Up a New Hobby. Sometimes when life gets a little dull, it’s great to have a hobby that holds your interest. Knitting might be a good choice for you, but agility training is a much better option for your dog.

2. Learn a New Skill. Teaching your dog or cat a new skill is a great way to spend time with them while improving everyone’s quality of life. Whether they learn a new way to play, or a skill that will help keep them safe, training is a fun way to keep your pets engaged in the world around them.

3. Take Time To Play. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy… and Jill a tired girl. One of the great things about living with animals is how much fun they bring to your life. Next time you catch yourself getting annoyed when Fluffy and Fido want attention because you’re trying to get one more piece of work done, throw down that pen and take some time to have fun.

4. Eat More Healthfully. Watching your waistline? You should also keep an eye on whether Fluffy and Fido are putting on a few too many holiday pounds. Extra weight can cause health problems for both you and your pets.

5. Quit Smoking. You know that smoking is bad for your health, but did you realize that it’s also bad for your pets? Second-hand smoke isn’t just a health hazard for people, it affects Fluffy and Fido’s health, too.

6. Exercise More. Walking is a great form of exercise and a great way to spend quality time for your dog. If you only go for one real walk a day, try figuring out how you can expand that to two. Your legs, and your pooch, will thank you.

7. Help Others. Thinking about incorporating volunteer work into your New Year’s resolutions? Consider letting your pet come with you. Look into training your dog or cat as a therapy animal so that they can share their love with people in need.

8 Get A New Look. Planning on a new regimen of monthly hair cuts and personal care so that you always look your best? Don’t forget about your pets. Regular grooming isn’t just a matter of aesthetics for a pet, it can also be important for good health.

9. Travel More. You may be imagining a few more out-of-state vacations, but expanding your horizons can be as simple and fun as taking a new route on your morning walk or going to a new park. Imagine all the exciting sights and smells you and your pet could find on your new adventures.

10. Appreciate What You Have. Hardly any of us spend enough quality time being present with our family and our pets. Always remember that sometimes the best way to improve your life is simply to live it. It could be that the best resolution is to resolve to do nothing at all.

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