What is happiness? Is it that refreshing sigh of relief you feel after you’ve spent the entire day working and finally arrive home to be greeted by your pooch’s wagging tail and longing eyes? Or is it that burst of excitement you feel when you open that long-awaited e-mail with news you’ve been hoping for?
As far-reaching as the question of happiness can be, we know one answer is simple: Our pets make us happy. But do we ever stop and think about what makes them happy?
Beyoncé has wise words about happiness “Be healthy, take care of yourself, but be happy with the beautiful things that make you you.”
Our pets have a good grip on who they are and they don’t put much thought into it. However, they need us to take care of them and help them be as healthy as can be.
In this article you’ll read all about what makes your dog’s life happier. You’ll discover five simple ways to greatly improve your dog’s wellbeing, some of which may be habits you already do. You’ll find that cultivating joy into your fluffy bundle of excitement will sprout glee into your own life.
1. Exercise and play time: move that body
Walking your dog and giving them opportunities for exercise is an obvious way to make their life happier, but it can never be stressed enough. Dogs love exercise! They’re fluffy bundles of frenetic energy, especially if they’re younger pups.
Get those balls, sticks, old socks, whatever makes your poochie roll and have them prance about in the fresh air. Try these games to make a simple walk more enriching!
Add walk and exercise time to your regular daily routine and you’ll be making your dog’s life even happier. Dogs adore routine! Choose a time that’s good for you and try to stick to it.
2. Let them smell the world around them
Dogs have amazing sniffers. They gather an impressive amount of information through their noses. The experience of sniffing nearly everything that crosses their path is something that naturally enriches their canine lives.
When on walks, don’t forget to take a minute to smell the roses. Or the daffodils, the crabgrass, the clover, the dandelions, the fire hydrant. Smelling makes dogs feel alive! You can teach your dog the command “go sniff” while leash training and incorporate smell time into their walk.
3. Diet: a healthy dog is a happy dog
Feeling good is an important part of feeling happy. By feeding your dog a quality diet you’re ensuring they’ll feel good. Whichever diet you choose, it should be the best quality and the right diet for them. Age, breed and lifestyle matters greatly. Check with your veterinarian for the best plan for your dog.
4. Hygiene: a clean dog is a happy dog
Some dogs hate getting washed and groomed. But, keeping your dog clean means they’ll encounter fewer issues and will feel better overall. By cleaning them often you’ll reduce the grooming time, since less dirt will gather in their coat.
Gently brush your dog’s coat to eliminate dirt, old hair, and dandruff. Enjoy this opportunity to bond with your best friend.
5. Give them minutes of undivided attention
Our dogs love spending time with us! They’ll get an enormous amount of happiness and satisfaction simply by receiving a few minutes of our undivided attention. Take anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes out of your day to stop and interact with them.
Pay attention and talk to them. They may not understand your words but you’ll be surprised by how much they’ll learn just by gazing at you. And have you heard, talking to your dog like a baby has real benefits!
You’ll find that the benefits of making your dog’s life happier will pay off with good behavior, fewer visits to the vet, and a high quality wellbeing that will translate into your own happiness.
Taking Beyonce’s advice one step further, we can easily apply it to our beloved furry side-kicks: “[Keep your dog] healthy, take care of [your dog], and be happy with the beautiful things that make [your dog, your dog]”
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