New Year’s resolutions for pet owners

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It’s nearly the start of 2021 and you might be starting to think about resolutions for the New Year – so why not include your pet in your resolutions?

PDSA Vet Nurse Nina Downing said: “If you have a hard time sticking to promises you make yourself – doing something for our pets might be the extra motivation we all need. This way we can help keep our pets happy and healthy in 2021 too!”

Nina’s top tips for resolutions that stick include:

1.Exercise

Everyone knows exercise is important for our health and mental wellbeing. Joining the gym in January may seem like a good idea, yet how many of us actually go?  Our latest PAW report found that over 1.4 million dogs aren’t walked every day, so taking the time to schedule in at least two walks a day with your pooch provides a healthy solution that both you and your pet will benefit from!

If you have a cat, slot in some extra playtime every day, they’ll appreciate more attention and benefit from increased activity!

2. Learn something new

One of the most popular New Year’s resolutions we make, is to learn something new. Why not include your four-legged friend in this, too? Learning a new trick, or even just brushing up on their training, can help you to spend more time with your pet and you’ll both be learning something new!

3. Eat healthy

We’re all a little guilty of over-indulging during Christmas and this can sometimes affect our pets, too (although we would always recommend feeding them a balanced diet no matter what time of year it is). January is a great time to stop the snacking and stick to a healthy diet – for the both of you!

Chat to your vet or vet nurse and make sure your pet is on the right diet. If you tend to feed your pet table scraps, make a resolution to stop – it’ll really help your pet lose ant extra pounds they might be carrying and help to prevent tummy troubles.

4. Spend time with the ones you love

If 2020 taught us anything it’s the importance of friends and family during challenging times. And with lockdowns and then Christmas holidays, we’ve tended to be home a lot more. This is great for our pets because they get to spend more time with us, but can also be really difficult for them when we go back to work or school and aren’t around as much. Some dogs can even suffer from separation anxiety and get really stressed.

So when routines do eventually resume, remember to make sure someone is there for your pet (a sitter or doggy daycare) so they aren’t alone for too long. When you are at home, make sure you put time aside to spend some quality time with your pet where they can have your attention all to themselves. You could play a fun game or even just sit and read a book while your cat curls up on your lap!

PDSA is the UK’s leading vet charity. We’re on a mission to improve pet wellbeing through prevention, education and treatment. Support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery helps us reach even more pet owners with vital advice and information. www.pdsa.org.uk

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