New Year's Resolutions for You and Your Dog
By: Jeff Noce, Voyce President
As the calendar turns to a new year, many of us immediately start thinking about how we can make this year better than the last one. Unfortunately, as we all know, resolutions are much easier to make than to keep.
The good news is that when we undertake resolutions with a buddy by our side, we’re more likely to achieve our goals. And chances are, you have the perfect accountability partner sitting right there at your feet! So when you’re making your resolutions, think about things you can do that include your dog. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
When you think “exercise,” what pops into your head? Jogging? Lifting weights? Sweating it out in a gym? Well, don’t forget that walking your dog counts as exercise, too! In fact, walking has been shown to improve circulation, strengthen muscles, build bones and lift your mood.
Since you’re likely already taking your dog for a daily walk, why not resolve to add just a couple of minutes or a few extra steps each time? Then gradually add more time and distance as the year goes on. If your dog has a Voyce Health Monitor, you can track your progress by keeping an eye on the “distance traveled” section in the Voyce Wellness Management Center.
Making time to play is important. Play can stimulate the mind, relieve stress, boost creativity and improve our connection with others. And if you have a dog, you’re in luck because you have a built-in playmate! So get outside and throw the ball, chase each other or play tug. Or experiment with different brain games around the house. Or come up with some games of your own. The important thing is that both you and your pooch are having fun!
How long has it been since you and your pup have seen your healthcare providers? If it’s been more than a year, it’s time to make an appointment! Regular check-ups for both of you can catch small issues before they become big problems.
When you take your dog for his appointment, be sure to ask your vet if your furry friend could stand to lose a little weight. An estimated 54% of pets are overweight but it’s difficult for most owners to recognize it. If your pooch needs to shed a few pounds, the Voyce Health Monitor lets you track his activity levels to help you adjust his food intake accordingly.
Try Something New
Seeking out new experiences is a great way to alleviate boredom, exercise our minds and boost our moods. It’s the same for our dogs. So why not try something new together? Have you always been intrigued by agility or doggie dancing? Then sign the two of you up for a training class! Or you could take a trip together to someplace you’ve never been before. Even visiting a new dog park is a nice change of scenery and gives you the opportunity to meet new people and new dogs.
I’d like to hear from you! If you have questions you’d like me to address on this blog regarding pet health or behavior, send an email to email@example.com.