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6 Resolutions Every Pet Owner Should Make

Looking to take the title of best pet owner? Here is our guide to being the best pet parent in 2023.

By Dmytryk Carreño on January 5, 2023

Here comes 2023 barreling toward us like a giant iron sphere shot out of a canon. And riding the coattails of ’22 are the expectations of establishing a new year’s resolution for yourself, an idea as tired as it is daunting.

But a resolution doesn’t have to be intimidating. Your resolution can be about loving more, caring more, being more attentive to the ones you love, including yourself.

And your pets.

It takes a lot of hard work to properly care for a pet, no matter how big or small or furry or scaly. Every pet has its own unique needs and desires, which we can sometimes forget to attend to when the year gets going, and our schedule fills up, which is where this list can come in handy!

Here are some great reminders and resolutions for you and your pet in the coming new year!

1. Exercise

Yes, even your lizard needs a little exercise. Getting a good workout looks different for every animal and depends on the age of your particular animal. Did you know that good muscle tone is essential for an iguana’s health? Especially female iguanas, who need to be in good shape to lay eggs. It’s true! Iguanas love to swim and could use a casual dip a couple of times a week to keep agile. 

House cats tend to get overweight, so getting your cat a tower or even a treadwheel for walking improves their health and keeps them busy!

Do your research this new year and see what kind of exercise your specific pet needs to stay healthy and happy, and be sure to fit it into your weekly schedule so you can make a good habit of getting your pet into their own good habit.

2. Diet

Many of us feed our pets the cheapest or most convenient pet food, some sort of kibble, grain or pellet. This does the job just fine, but to ensure a healthy pet, you must provide a diverse and nutritious diet for them. For example, hamsters do like seeds and nuts but can thrive when their diets also include fruits and vegetables. Even boiled eggs and mealworms! 

Cats and dogs love a lot of food that we humans also love, like sweet potatoes, chicken, carrots and apples. But remember to check to see what your specific breed or species is allergic to! For example, did you know that grapes and raisins are poisonous to dogs? Now you do.

3. Mental Stimulation

Just like we all need something to keep our minds busy and sharp, pets also benefit greatly from a good brain workout. There are many things that we, as pet parents, can do to improve our pet’s mental stimulation; many of us just don’t make the time for it. For example, walks are good for dogs, but just walking your dog isn’t enough. Get your dog a treat puzzle to keep themselves entertained, take them to the dog park for some social interaction, get them a trainer or train them at home. No dog is too old to learn new tricks! Have a bird? Many birds are remarkably intelligent and can solve complex puzzles, play with toys, and, as I’m sure you know, even learn new words.

4. Regular Check-Ups

I know this is starting to sound a lot like a list for humans, but that’s sort of the point. Animals’ needs are very, very similar to our own! And just like we should all be getting regular check-ups with our doctors (and not waiting until we have a severe injury to do so), our pets should be doing the same. Or, rather, we should be doing it for our pets.

It’s important to catch things before they get out of hand and make sure that our pets are leading a healthy life to ensure a long and happy one with us. Ask your vet about what to look out for in your animal, how to give them the best care and make a habit of scheduling vet visits.

5. Grooming

Regular grooming is essential to a pet’s health and happiness. Even reptiles need something in their habitat to help them get to that pesky itch; rodents need clean water to wash themselves with. Furry pets need regular brushing, even if they have shorter hair. Your pet’s groomer not only washes and trims your pet’s hair but can trim their nails and clean any build-up around their eyes, ears and paws. And just like we pay attention to our own mouths, you should pay attention to the health of your animal’s mouth, ensuring they have clean teeth and gums.

6. Regularity

Again, the whole point of this is to make it a part of your regularly scheduled, day-to-day routine. Add it in and make it a habit — that’s the tricky bit, the resolution bit. Otherwise, it’ll just be another thing or things you do a few times, then stop doing. But to stop once you’ve started would be incredibly disappointing for your pet. So be sure to add it to your calendar. Make a daily alarm of it. Tie a string around your finger! Your pet will be ecstatic about the lifestyle adjustment, and I promise you will too.

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