9 New Years Health Resolutions to keep your Dog in Tip Top Condition
With the New Year in full swing, now is the perfect time to put in place your K9 action plan for a happy and healthy 2024. The free WAGSTA walk, weight and wellness app, makes this is easier than ever! Use the app to stay on top of your dog's health schedule and to motivate daily activity with your dog. By achieving the following resolutions you and your dog could be in your best shape ever:
1. Take your dog on daily walks to explore new scents and stay active together.
One of the most effective ways of keeping your dog healthy is to encourage daily exercise. A 30-minute walk will do most dogs (and owners) the world of good. Not only does regular walking burn calories to help maintain a healthy weight, walking boosts mobility and helps maintain muscle strength. And do not forget the added bonus of improved doggy mental wellness from investigating all those new scents. The added stimulation and socialisation enjoyed through dog walking can lead to a reduction in both you and your dog’s stress levels! Keep track of your adventures together with the free Wagsta app. Track time, distance and calorie burn for both you and your dog, then share your walks with family and friends.
2. Schedule regular vet check-ups to keep your dog in tip-top shape throughout the year.
Keep on top of your dog’s health by arranging regular veterinary check-ups. For most dogs this check-up will be incorporated with their annual vaccination. It is important to keep up to date with your dog’s annual shots to ensure protection against infectious diseases such as parvo virus and kennel cough. Your dog’s veterinary check-up will include a dental and overall health check for the early detection of disease. As a guide all dogs should have at least one check up per year, with aging dogs over the age of 8 years encouraged to have 6 monthly checks. You can set reminders of your dog’s health appointments and schedule medication reminders with the free Wagsta health app.
3. Set aside dedicated playtime every day to strengthen your owner-dog bond and keep your dog mentally stimulated.
Play is an important part of most dogs’ routines and is especially important for dogs kept in small apartments or environments with limited stimulation. Not only does learning new games and tricks keep your dog mentally engaged, but playtime also helps with general obedience by encouraging your dog to listen to your directions. Of course, the number one benefit of regular playtime is having fun with your dog. What better way to bond than through fun-filled activities!
4. Incorporate healthy treats into your dog’s diet.
The saying “You are what you eat” applies equally to our dogs and ourselves! The new year is the ideal time to give calorie laden treats the flick and to provide nutritious healthy treats instead. Not only will this help maintain a healthy weight for you and your dog, but healthy treats also cost a fraction of commercially made treats. Carrot sticks, green beans, strawberries, and apple slices are a hit with most dogs (and owners). Packed with nutrients and low in calories, fresh fruit and veg makes the perfect snacks for sharing!
5. Keep track of your weight together!
Tracking doggy weight is an important step in maintaining your dog's optimal health. By regularly weighing and charting your dog's weight you will avoid any unnoticed dog weight gain or weight loss (and any potential health consequences). Maintaining a healthy doggy weight is the most important step in optimizing your dog's longevity. Discover your dog's ideal healthy weight with a free WAGSTA Weight Check.
6. Create a cozy and comfortable space for your dog to relax in at home.
The new year is a wonderful time to overhaul your pup’s living quarters. Wash and air out your dog’s bedding and give grooming utensils a good clean. Check your dog’s yard or enclosure to ensure it remains safe and secure. Fix any lose fence palings and remove potential hazards, such as fallen branches and refuse. For aging dogs you may want to consider in-home modifications such as matting to reduce your dog slipping on wooden floors as well as raised, well-padded bedding to ease your dogs’ joints.
7. Schedule regular grooming sessions to keep your dog’s coat shiny and nails trimmed.
Regular grooming is especially important for long and thick furred dogs. By regularly grooming your dog you can avoid skin and eye infections. Keep hair trimmed away from the eyes and regularly check for matted fur. Medicated shampoos can be useful for dogs who suffer hot spots and dermatitis. Follow your vet’s recommendation as to product and frequency of bathing. An important part of grooming is to regularly inspect your dog’s paws and to keep your dog’s nails trimmed. This will prevent avoid overgrown nails which are prone to splitting and injury. Long and thick furred dogs kept in hot climates often benefit from a full body clip to keep them cooler in the summer months. The difference this can make to energy levels is amazing.
8. Keep parasites and creepy-crawlies away.
The new year is the ideal time to make sure you are up to date with your dog’s parasite prevention. There is a wide range of safe and effective parasite medications on the market to keep your dog free of fleas, ticks, heart worm and intestinal worms. Follow your vet’s recommendation for the product most suited to your dog's individual needs. Then set reminders with the free Wagsta health app, to ensure your never miss giving your dog their medication on time. Keeping up to date with your dog’s parasite preventatives could literally save your dog’s life!
9. Explore dog-friendly parks or beaches to socialize and enjoy outdoor adventures together.
Mix up your usual walk routine by exploring new destinations with your dog. A change in route and destination helps keep motivation for regular exercise high. Track and photograph your adventures using the free WAGSTA app. Then share your walks with your dog loving friends, to encourage increased activity all round! If you are still looking for added inspiration to get active with your dog, check out the range of dog-friendly activities available. Consider joining a dog-friendly fitness class or agility training for added physical and mental stimulation.
WAGSTA recommends a veterinary health check for all dogs prior to participating in any diet or exercise
plan. WAGSTA Wellness diet plan is not suitable for pregnant dogs and dogs less than 12 months of age (or
months if a giant breed).