Ring in the New Year with Resolutions for your Pet

If you think about it, making some New Year’s resolutions that benefit your pet is a great idea. Maybe you want to be more active with your dog or spend more time with your cat in the coming year. Whatever the goal, you’ll find that there are plenty of ways to improve or enhance the quality of your pet’s life. Here are some suggestions:

  • Twice-yearly exams.

    These examinations provide your veterinarian the opportunity to diagnose disease early, often before signs become noticeable. Catching disease early can make it easier and less costly to treat down the road.
  • Brush your pet’s teeth daily.

    Use a toothpaste that is specifically formulated for pets to help prevent the buildup of tartar. Dental chew toys, treats, rinses and wipes contain special enzymes that can help control buildup and maintain the health of your pet’s teeth and gums.
  • Regular walks/play time.

    If you like to stay in shape, daily walks and activities can help you and your pet maintain a healthy weight. In turn, this may help prevent or control certain diseases such as diabetes and arthritis.
  • Consistent grooming.

    Regular grooming should include:
    • Bathing: Helps keep skin and coat in good condition.
    • Brushing: Reduces shedding, improves circulation and can detect unhealthy parasites like ticks and fleas which can also infest your home. Also, daily brushing can reduce hairballs in your cat.
    • Nail trimming: Overgrown nails are more likely to break or split(OUCH!), causing discomfort or injury when your pet is walking.
    • Ear cleaning: Dogs’ ears, in particular, are susceptible to wax buildup and infection. A careful cleaning with the right products can control or eliminate most problems. If you notice excessive scratching or a foul odor from your pet’s ear, it’s time to contact your veterinarian.
    • Haircuts: Some breeds require regular hair clipping or shaving.
  • Socialization.

    Your pet likes adventure probably as much as you do. Take your pet to a new park in the neighborhood, to a friend’s house or doggie daycare where there are other pets to play with.
  • Downtime.

    It’s just as important to snuggle, cuddle or spend time just sitting quietly petting your dog or cat.

Make a commitment to your pet in the coming year. Talk to your veterinarian about your resolutions or visit Banfield's Pet Health Resources for more information on caring for your pets..