7 Goals to Set for You & Your Dog for 2016

Goals With Your Pet Dog This YearHere we are in the year 2016!

WOW! Seems a little crazy doesn’t it? I remember when I was a child, everyone had thought that by the year 2000, we would all be driving flying cars, and wearing silver futuristic clothing. While there is definitely some “futuristic” clothing being worn around the world, we are certainly not travelling by air in our cars. My point in all this is, each year, when we welcome the beginning of another 365 days, about 45% of people make New Year’s resolutions, and according to www.statisticbrain.com – only 8% of those people actually keep their resolutions. Which is a big reason I generally don’t bother with them. Instead, I prefer to set goals for myself… realistic goals.

Trying to achieve a goal which is incredibly far fetched, or next to impossible, is only setting myself up for failure. It’s a lot like training a dog or cat - if you set them up for success, you have a much better chance of achieving what you set out to do, whereas if you try and push your pet to do something they are not ready for, or set a goal that is just not ideal (for whatever reason), you are setting your pet up for failure.

Today, I will share my top 7 (realistic) goals for you and your dog for 2016.

7 Goals For You And Your Dog For 2016:

1. Start a Daily Walking Routine for You and Your Dog

Now, maybe you already do this, and if you do, you could “up the ante” so to speak. Start walking 2 or 3 times a day rather than once or twice. If you don’t already walk daily with your dog, now is a great time to start! Not only is walking on a daily basis great for your own health, but it helps keep your dog healthy and fit as well.

2. Why Not Have a Date Night With Your Dog?

No, i’m not crazy, I don’t literally mean, take your dog out on a romantic date, but why not set up a certain day of the week where you and your dog do something special together? A weekly trip to the dog park, a fishing trip, a special day trip to the pet store… there are so many options, and your dog will love you for it.

3. Make Your Dog a Special Dinner

What is your dog’s favorite food? Maybe it’s meat, broccoli, or even a homemade dog biscuit. Whatever it is, as long as it’s healthy, set aside one day a week to prepare your 4 legged friend’s FAV food dish!

4. Grooming

Not all pets like to be groomed, but grooming is an essential part of owning a pet. Some breeds need to be brushed or bathed more than others, but it is a fact that most dogs and/or cats do not get groomed as much as they should. Why not set a goal for yourself to sit down and brush your dog at least once a week?

Goals With Your Pet Dog This Year5. Doggie Play Date!

Some of you may find this silly, but believe it or not, dogs can make friends too. It’s true! So, this year, try and set up a doggie play date with a friend and their dog. Take it one step further by making it a doggie sleepover party!

6. Exercise

How often do we hear about people setting New Year’s resolutions to lose weight? Exercise is extremely important for both human, and pet. This year, try setting a realistic goal for exercising you and your dog. Create a journal of your progress, and be sure to keep it real. Don’t go nuts on your expectations, and stay at you, and your dogs own comfortable pace.

7. Dog Training/Tricks

Generally, we all teach our dogs to sit, lay down, come, and other basics of dog training. For 2016, think about setting a goal to teach your dog a new trick every couple of months. Even if you have an older dog. – Who said you can’t teach an old dog new tricks anyways? Definitely a myth. Or, if you’re not into teaching dog tricks, keep your training fresh in their minds by starting a regular training routine. And I don’t mean just puppies either – with older dogs as well as younger dogs, it is important to have regular training sessions to keep them sharp. Plus dogs love to learn, and love to know that they are doing a great job with they have learned. So pull out some yummy dog treats, and set a goal to train for 15 minute sessions at least once a week.

I could on and on with fun, helpful goals for you and your dog for 2016. The possibilities are endless. Setting goals like the 7 I mention above – not only gives you and your dog something to work towards throughout the year, but it will help you stay positive in your life as well. We all know how good it makes us feel when we are able to accomplish something we set out to do, so why not bring our dogs or cats along with us on the journey? Get out your pen and paper, and create a list of realistic goals for you and your pet, and remember to have fun with it!

If you were to set a goal for you and your pet this year, what would it be?

Share with us in the comment section!

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jenna drady headshotJenna Drady

Jenna Drady  is the author and creator of ownedbyahusky.ca. She is a mother of two beautiful daughters and 3 Siberian Huskies. Being a husky mom for a long duration of her life, Jenna was inspired to begin writing about them. In doing so, she began doing massive research on dog behavior, and all things dog in general. Jenna is inspired every day by her family, and loves to bring her readers valuable information as well as a little humor too! Jenna has created her own business partnered with her lovely mother while blogging called Pawz N Clawz Jewelry N Things. They currently sell handmade jewelry with added pet charms, as well as a few dog toys too!  As an animal rights activist, and huge believer in helping pets who have been stuck in shelters, they donate a portion of their sales to local shelters throughout Canada.

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38 Responses to 7 Goals to Set for You & Your Dog for 2016

  1. kelly says:

    Exercise and mental stimulation for your dog is very important and of course what a great way to do this by enjoying some time with your dog at the park, playing together outside, or going for a walk – both you and your dog will benefit! This would be an easy and fun goal for the New Year.

  2. We currently do all those things! Mr. N is spoiled lol… and we’re having a puppy sleepover this weekend!

  3. I am trying to brush Bentley each day. He sheds 365 a year and he doesn’t mind the brush. We are all upping our exercise program and plan weekly excursions to explore places for our blog. These are all great ideas.

  4. Could not agree more, I think we should all set aside Mommy/pup time without electronics of any kind so that we can focus on each other

  5. Carleen says:

    All are great goals!!! Happy New Year!

  6. MattieDog says:

    I absolutely couldn’t agree any more: Peoples, have a date night wif UR pooch! Make it special – we like to do this with momma and in da summer we go for a slow long walk along da beach, and in da winter we play games. These special date nights are awesome!

    Mattiedog, A Little Dog Making a Big Difference in This World

  7. Dogvills says:

    These are great suggestions. I love walking with my dog everyday.

  8. Great goals and I do all of the above with my seven kitties. It has strengthened our relationship tremendously!

  9. Robin says:

    These are great resolutions! You are right about having to set goals for yourself that you can reasonably achieve. A lot of people make the mistake of creating too many goals and making them too big. At the moment, the resolutions for my cats and I are put on hold (medical issues), but we are the type that change our goals whenever we feel the need to anyway. :)

    • Jenna Drady says:

      I think that’s the best way. Being able to change the goals we set makes us feel much more flexible and a lot less pressure. I am very sorry to hear about your medical issues and hope all is well with you and your family.

  10. Great ideas – I love the idea of date night with the dog. I need to implement more of these with the cats.

  11. I’m having a dog date night with our three hounds right now!

  12. These are great and very realistic goals for dogs and their people for 2016. I love your idea of a dog date. I may just have to implement that with my kitties. :)

  13. Great goals. We will be working more on social skills and exercise with Kilo the Pug (mental and physical). Happy 2016

  14. Amanda says:

    Wait, date night with my dog isn’t every night?! Ahahaha!

  15. Great resolution ideas! Mom slacks on the training area otherwise we do pretty good! Love Dolly

  16. Sadie says:

    These are great suggestions. I especially love ‘date night.’ Thanks for sharing.

  17. I need to do more interactive play with Truffle and Brulee!

  18. Suzanne Dean says:

    I too prefer goals over resolutions. I gave up the resolution thing years ago. I also don’t use January as my starting point. Most people do and that’s fine, I prefer to break the mold and be different. My New Year begins in the month that I started my blog.

    I think goal setting with your dog is a great idea. Believe or not your dog really will keep you accountable. If you start walking 2 x’s a day instead of one. Those sad eyes look at you and guess what, your up out of your chair for that second walk. Promises to a pet that loves you unconditionally – well – how can you go back on that. :-)

  19. Ryan says:

    Number 7 is our plan. We’re working on better obedience and fun!

  20. Rachel says:

    We are going for more exercise and training!

  21. All a dog really wants is more quality time, when it comes down to it! Love the suggestions, we’re going to be learning a new trick each month this year. January is all about Up – an easy, natural trick that Matilda always does, but not on command, just her paws up kangaroo pose that I love so much.

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