The new year is upon us, and many of you have set resolutions to fulfill in 2020. Perhaps your goal is to sign up for a workout class, eat healthier, or spend less time on social media.

Have you included your furry friends in your New Year’s resolutions? This year, consider creating resolutions for your pets, as they too can benefit from improvements to their health and wellness.

Here are several New Year’s resolution ideas to consider to help promote a happier and healthier lifestyle for you and your furry friends.

1. Complete a Diet Audit

 With the new year upon us, now is the perfect time to re-evaluate your pet’s diet. 

 Most pet owners ‘eyeball’ their furry friends’ daily intake of food, which can result in overfeeding and weight gain. To avoid this, you can use a measuring cup to ensure your pet is receiving the proper amount of food and snacks.

This is a great time to ensure your animal is eating a healthy diet for the appropriate age, gender, and size. Choosing a diet that fits the needs of your pet will help keep them in optimal health. 

Before making any changes to your animal’s diet, be sure to check with your vet!

2. Weight Loss

 Obesity is very common in household pets. If you’ve noticed your four-legged friend gaining a couple of pounds, this is a purr-fect opportunity to start a weight loss plan.

The rise in obesity can primarily be attributed to overfeeding high-calorie food and treats, and table snacks. 

Discuss with your vet about a healthy diet plan for your pet, as they can help calculate the appropriate number of calories your pet needs for daily requirements.  

3. Take Extra Walks

 If one of your New Year’s resolutions is to shed a few pounds, taking your dog out for more walks is a great way to accomplish this while benefiting your pup too!

 Going on walks provides exercise, but they also provide a large helping of enrichment through the smells and sounds of the outside environment. In addition, walks are a great way to bond with your dog.

 During the winter months, it’s important to take precautions prior to heading out for a walk in the cold. For example, you should use dog booties if you plan on taking your dog for an extra-long hike in the snow. It’s important to use certain care gear for extreme weather conditions to avoid irritation or trauma to the paws.

4. Try New Exercise Ideas

 It’s recommended to get creative with exercises for your pet so that they benefit not only physically, but mentally too! Engaging your pet in fun and dynamic exercises such as agility training or dock diving is a great way to spend time with them while also keeping them happy and healthy.

5. Play on a Regular Basis 

 A good game of fetch is a common way to play with your dog, but are you aware of the importance of playing with your cats on a regular basis?

 Interactive play with your cats is necessary for their physical exercise and behavioral growth. Play helps to decrease timidness, promote confidence and positive feelings, and is a great way to create a strong bond between you and your cat.

For positive results, schedule play sessions for 5-15 minutes a few times a day, depending on your feline’s age and health.

6. Schedule Vet Appointments 

It can be tempting to skip your annual veterinary appointment, especially if your pet appears to be healthy. However, regular visits to the vet are crucial for ensuring a long, happy, and healthy life for your pet.

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