Let’s face it, most of us make New Year’s resolutions that we keep for about a week before we forget about them, or decide to try again next year. Many of these resolutions center around losing weight, earning more money, and other accolades that our society has deemed valuable. This year, our team at 360 Pet Medical has a challenge for you. Instead of making unattainable goals based on self-judgment and self-criticism, embody the spirit of your favorite furry friend, and make pet-inspired New Year’s Resolutions. Take on your pet’s positive, carefree approach to life, and you may actually achieve your resolutions and a happier life.
Pet-inspired resolution #1: Take more naps
Our culture praises nonstop productivity, which usually leads to stress, anxiety, burnout, and serious health conditions. This year, take a cue from your pet and resolve to take more naps. Our pets understand the importance of a good nap—cats sleep an average of 15 hours a day, and some can sleep up to 20 hours a day. On average, dogs spend about 50% of their day sleeping. Unlike people, who have busy schedules and don’t always listen to their body signals, our pets sleep when their bodies tell them to sleep. Napping offers people—and pets—many benefits, including
- Reduced fatigue
- Increased alertness
- Improved mood
- Quicker reaction time
- Improved memory
Instead of adding more to your already full 2023 plate, resolve to get more rest and see how your life is transformed. Oh, and resolve to upgrade your pet’s bed. Pet bed comfort has come a long way, and some now rival a high-end human mattress. Orthopedic pet beds are designed to provide support and cushion bony joints, including hips, knees, and elbows, and improve your pet’s comfort, health, and sleep quality. Older, arthritic pets will especially benefit from these beds.
Pet-inspired resolution #2: Make more time for fun
Time spent with your pet is never wasted, and can benefit you, too, so we encourage you to make more time for fun with your pet in 2023. You and your pet will benefit from the exercise, and you’ll strengthen your special pet-owner bond. Choose one or more of these fun activities to do with your pet every day:
- Explore a new neighborhood or trail — Instead of your regular loop, explore new neighborhoods or trails on your daily walk with your pet.
- Set up a play date — If your pet enjoys other animals’ company, invite a friend to bring their pet for a playdate at your home or nearby park. This will give both pets a chance to socialize and have a blast while exercising.
- Have a spa day — Get your pet looking and feeling their best with an at-home spa day. Brush their fur, bathe them, trim their nails, and brush their teeth.
- Make healthy treats — Whip up a special treat for your pet. Look for healthy pet recipes online, and then consult your veterinarian or an accredited veterinary resource to confirm that a recipe’s ingredients are safe for your pet.
Pet-inspired resolution #3: Savor your food
Pets love to eat, and they don’t try to hide it—they wag their tail and start to salivate at the mere mention of a “t-r-e-a-t,” which they will gulp down in less than a second. But, food is meant to be savored, and we can make healthy dietary choices for ourselves and our pets without sacrificing taste. Overweight and obese pets are more likely to experience chronic health issues and live shorter lives, and pet owners are responsible for ensuring their pet maintains a healthy weight. Use these tips to keep your pet trim and healthy:
- Calculate your pet’s caloric needs — Consider your pet’s weight, activity level, and age to calculate their daily caloric needs. Online pet calorie calculators make this process easier.
- Measure your pet’s food — Measure your pet’s food portions with a measuring cup to ensure they are fed the exact amount.
- Monitor your pet’s weight status — Monitor your pet’s weight by weighing them and assessing their body condition score (BCS) monthly.
Pet-inspired resolution #4: Take care of your health
OK, your pet may not consciously choose to take care of their health, but as their owner, you know the importance of good health for a fulfilling life. Make a New Year’s resolution to ensure you and your pet are in tip-top condition by scheduling your yearly checkup and your pet’s annual wellness exam. Regular wellness examinations and preventive care will prevent disease and prolong your pet’s life by allowing your veterinarian to check for subtle illness signs that may not be obvious, but can be better treated or managed with an early diagnosis. Regular screening tests also provide the veterinarian with baseline values for future comparison.
We hope 2023 is the best year yet for you and your pet—we think it will be, if you both embrace these pet-inspired New Year’s resolutions. Ensure your pet starts the year with a check-up. Contact our team at 360 Pet Medical to schedule a wellness exam.