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6 Changes to Make with your Dog in 2020

        
          

A new year often spurs people to make significant changes in their own lives; but what about the lives of their pets?  Though 2020 is in full affect, consider the following in order to improve the life of your dog. 

Sign Up for a Class Together

Many pet owners wish they spent more quality time with pets while also wishing for better behavior and more socialization.  You can check all of these boxes by enrolling your dog in a training class.  Even if your dog has already mastered basic obedience, there are plenty of opportunities for teaching your pup new tricks.  For instance, introduction to Agility, Rally-O, or Canine Good Citizen training may all be appropriate for your dog.

Learn to Make DIY Dog Treats

More than half of household pets in the United States are obese, which leads to expensive health problems, decreased quality of life, and a shortened life expectancy.  One small change you can make in 2020 is to control your dog’s calorie intake by making your own healthy dog treats.  Just remember:  portion control is key, as even treats made in your own kitchen can contain calories that add up!

Learn Doggy Massage

Massage has many of the same benefits for dogs as for humans, including increased circulation, reduced anxiety, decreased stress, lower blood pressure, and diminished pain.  Additionally, the giver of a dog massage will also reap some of these benefits!  You and your dog will develop a stronger bond when you learn these four tried-and-true canine massage techniques

Focus on Gut Health

The importance of good gut health in humans made headlines in 2019, but what about gut health for dogs?  Just like their two-legged counterparts, dogs require good bacteria in their gut in order to thrive.  If your dog suffers from allergies, chronic GI upset, anxiety, arthritis, or chronic inflammation, poor gut health may be to blame.  Enhance your dog’s health by focusing on ways to heal the gut – such as with probiotics, gut health supplements, and reduced stress – for a healthier and happier dog.

Commit to a Cleaner Environment

As dog owners, we often neglect the living spaces of our pets.  However, research has shown that the dirtiest area in most homes are a dog’s food and water bowls.  Not only can the bacteria living in these areas harm humans, but they can make dogs sick as well.  Create a cleaning routine in 2019 that includes regular sanitizing of items your dog uses every day.

The start of a new year is also a good time to wash your dog’s bedding, collar, leash, and toys. 

Update Microchip Information

Finally, make sure to update your dog’s microchip and dog tag information to reflect any changes that were made in 2018.  Incorrect contact information can be the difference between your dog being lost for a few hours or for an eternity. 

To update your dog’s microchip information, simply call the number of your pet’s microchip manufacturer, provide your pet’s ID number, and provide the information you wish to change.  Many microchip companies also allow you to make these changes online.  If you are unsure of your pet’s ID number, talk to your veterinarian.

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Anna Weber

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