we start 2014, many of us take pleasure in making a few
resolutions as a way to begin the year with high hopes
and a fresh start. Below are a few resolutions I hope
every dog owner will consider.
important, I believe, is to resolve to truly want any
and all dogs you bring into your home. Like any
domesticated animal, dogs rely on us to care for them,
and that is a responsibility that shouldnít be taken
lightly. Plan for and be prepared for all of the
wonderful things adding a dog to your household can
bring, but keep in mind that your dog is counting on you
for proper care, training and nutrition.
expect your dog to learn or behave like a human.
Although they are quite compatible with our way of life,
dogs are very different from us. Take the time to
discover a bit about the fascinating species youíve
brought into your world, and vow to better understand
and appreciate them for what they are. A good start is
to learn a bit about their body language, so you can
better Ďreadí what your dog is saying.
hard as it is for me to comprehend, I know there are
people out there who do not share my passion for dogs. I
think itís important for those of us who do include
dogs in our lives to, as a whole, present dog ownership
in a responsible and positive light. This includes
teaching your dog some basic manners so he integrates
easily into public, and picking up after your dog. I
believe that anti-dog people would become much more
tolerant of canines if our parks, lawns and public
places werenít littered with pooh, as they are now.
Resolve to put a plastic bag in your pocket every time
you take your dog out for a walk, and use it!
cats, dogs arenít great at self-grooming. Resolve to
give your dogís coat what it needs to be healthy --
that may simply require a thorough brushing once a week,
or regular visits to a professional groomer. If you have
a dog that has any length of coat, it will require some
attention to prevent matting, which can be very painful
if not addressed.
generally donít do well in isolation, but flourish
when considered a true member of the family. This
includes inside privileges and taking the time to teach
your dog how you expect him to behave when in the house.
Additionally, all but the heaviest of coated breeds will
benefit from living in a temperature-controlled
and perhaps most importantly, resolve to behave toward
your dog in a way that builds trust, and does no harm.
Be kind, gentle and understanding, and know that your
dog wants to be compliant, to be included, and to be
your best friend.