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Happy Pet Appreciation Week

Jun 08, 2016

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TIME_Magazine_Animals_and_Your_Health_Cover.jpegDid you know pets are good for your body and the mind? There are many studies about pets contributing to our health and happiness. Check out the recent issue of TIME Magazine Animals and Your Health to read about the benefits pets have on our overall well-being. Additionally, Dr. Small has also written about the different ways pets improve our cardiovascular health in a previous blog post, “Pets keep our hearts healthy”. Pets keep us physically active when we walk and play with them. They comfort us after a long day at work or school. Just seeing our dog’s tail wagging or hearing our cat’s purring seems to melt away our stress. 

There’s nothing quite like the companionship and love between a pet owner and their pet. And that’s why we have a special week dedicated to appreciating our pets. 

Pet Appreciation Week

Pet Appreciation Week is celebrated on the first full week of June. With all the health benefits our pets give us, what better way to show your pet some appreciation than to take care of their physical and mental health! Here are a few ideas to help you celebrate. 

Take care of your pet’s physical health. 

  • Schedule their bi-annual wellness visit with your family veterinarian. Young pets should have annual checkups while older pets should have checkups twice a year. The earlier diseases and conditions, like cancer, are detected, the better the chance treatments and outcomes will be successful. 
  • Exercise your pets regularly. If you aren’t already on daily walking schedule with your dog, set one now. Even a short 15-minute walk can greatly benefit them. For cats, spend more time playing with them. Motivating them to chase a laser, fetch a plush mouse doll, or pounce on bells gives them a daily dose of exercise.
  • Feed appropriately. When your pet is overweight, the added pounds will increase the likelihood of high blood pressure, kidney disease, osteoarthritis, and many forms of cancer.  Find out more about the risks of pet obesity at PetObesityPrevention.org.
  • Be prepared to take care of them when they need emergency care, or when they need advanced medical care as they age. Many senior pets will develop some type of condition or disease. If your pet is still young and does not have any major health conditions, we highly encourage you to purchase pet insurance for them. Pet insurance allows you to focus on getting your pet the best care by removing much of the financial burden off your shoulders.

Take care of your pet’s mental health

Pets also need mental stimulation. Walking, playing, and behavior training all help keep your pet’s mind agile and young.

  • Travel to new places. If your dog loves going out with you, take them to a new dog park, beach, or public area. It can be a perfect way to stimulate their mind with all the new sights, sounds, and smells.
  • Just like dogs need a regular walking schedule, indoor cats need consistent playtimes. Provide them with lots of opportunities to play both alone and with you. Turn everyday objects into toys. Create a cat obstacle course or jungle gym out of cardboard boxes. Hide a treat in a visible place and watch them pounce on their “prey.”
  • And of course, we can’t leave out toys. It’s one of the easiest ways to show appreciation to our pets. But, don’t settle for just any toy. There are many for both cats and dogs that are designed to stimulate their minds. A popular one is a puzzle feeder where pets are required to use their mind to get to the food. Here are a few resources on games or toys to help keep your pets’ brains young.

Share YOUR ideas with us!

How do you like to keep your pets’ bodies and minds active? Share your ideas with us by posting your tips and/or photos to Facebook. We’d love to see what you and your furry best friend are up to this week! 



Category: Pet News