Who loves you more than your pet? This Valentine’s Day, don’t forget to show your pets the same love they show you every day.
But how? You already know chocolate is a no-no, and since your pets can’t read e-cards and don’t appreciate jewelry or flowers ― well, that takes all the go-to Valentine’s gifts off the table.
Here’s the good news. There are better ways to show your pets how much you love them, and while you can make Valentine’s Day extra special for them, here are 10 simple things you can do that will make your pet feel loved every day.
1. Feed your pets healthy food.
Just like humans, pets thrive when they have a healthy diet. Check out this guide for How to Choose the Best Dog Food from American Kennel Club.
2. Exercise your pet.
Exercise is a vital part of enriching your pets’ lives. Walking, running, playing fetch or tug, learning agility or flyball and even your daily activities are all great ways to keep your dog physically fit. For cats, try interactive play with wand toys (we like Da Bird) or balls.
3. Learn a new love language.
Become bilingual by learning your pet’s love language. Our pets tell us languages in so many ways through their body language, but sometimes we don’t understand what they’re saying.
4. Pay attention to what he wants to do.
Once you speak dog or cat, start observing whether or not your pets enjoy the activities you’re asking them to participate in. Try to find things that he loves doing and work those activities into your schedule. For example, if your dog loves to dig, make him a sandpit out of a kiddie pool. If your cat loves going outside, build a cattery so she can enjoy the outdoors safely.
5. Invest in a relationship-based training class.
Reward-based training classes help you to build a relationship with your pet, provide her with mental (and sometimes physical) enrichment. Try a class in basic manners.
6. Visit the vet for a checkup.
Let’s face it. Few of us like going to the doctor, and our pets are no different. But you can teach your pets to tolerate going to the vet by doling out delicious treats that make the experience more enjoyable. A suggestion would be to simply come and visit, so that later on when an appointment is necessary, your pet will have a more positive association with medical care. Don’t forget to schedule your pet’s annual checkup while you’re there. Whenever possible, find a holistic veterinarian.
7. Play more games.
Playing games is an effective stress reliever for you and provides your pets with both mental and physical benefits. Some examples are fetch, hide-and-seek frisbee that you enjoy playing with each other. Your pet isn’t sure how to play games? There is training on how you can teach him.
8. Help him conquer his fears.
In animals, fear manifests itself in several ways, ranging from shutting down to retreating to appearing aggressive. We don’t often work on our pets’ fears (or even notice them) unless it becomes a problem for us.
9. Using appropriate walking tools.
Collars and harnesses are tools that can help your dog walk on a loose leash and also remain comfortable. If the tool you’re using isn’t meeting your needs and those of your pet, do some research and find something better.
10. Enjoy and pamper your pets.
Most important of all, show them just how much they are loved. Take a few extra minutes to cuddle. Let your dog play with his buddies just a bit longer. Give your cat an extra treat now and then just for being cute.
Show Your Pets Love Everyday
Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to end on February 14th. Use these ideas for the rest of the days throughout the year. Listen to your pets’ love language! I guarantee your fur babies will love you even more in the years to come!