Modern life is packed with things you have to do, with deadlines and you end up having very little to no time left to spare. The last person on the list, for most of us, is ourselves and the second last on the list? Our pets.
If you get a free afternoon you’re far likely to spend it with your family or friends than exclusively with your dog. It’s not that you don’t enjoy it, it’s just about priorities. There is limited time for leisure and it seems there are always more important things to do.
Well, this article is going to add some balance and some healthy habits to your lifestyle, with nothing but more quality time and enjoyment to be had.
A great way to increase the value of how you spend your time is to make it count for more than one purpose. If you can combine personal benefits with spending quality time with your pet, that creates quality time.
Another trick is to keep these sessions short. It will guarantee you’ll stick to them. It’s ALWAYS easier to find 15-20 minutes of spare time than it is to find a full hour.
That being said, let’s get right into our suggestions for how to keep yourself and your dog healthy.
First one is pretty obvious, but you’d be amazed on how many dog owners fail to incorporate this into their lives. Exercise with your pet! When you take your dog for a walk try to add a little cardio time for both of you by jogging for no more than 15 minutes, or if jogging is too much of a stress, try power-walking instead.
This could be your morning routine. It will be wonderful for your overall health, it will wake you up and get you ready for the day and it will help consume some of your dog’s energy. You’ll get an endorphin boost and your dog will have the time of his life every morning, what better way to spend 15 minutes on?
You can go out for a jog 3-4 times a week. The rest of the days you can allocate those 15 minutes spend in the company of your pet alone in various other ways.
Our second suggestion is to cook for yourself and your dog at least one time a week. Something simple, something fun and easy to do and most importantly, something healthy. There are tons of recipes out there you can try that combine great taste with healthy eating and are suited for both humans and dogs alike.
Cooking is a sign of love and that feeling will not be missed by either of you. On top of that you’ll give yourself and your dog a super healthy meal. It can be as simple as a steak or something completely different like a vegan recipe, in the end, if you keep healthy eating in mind, it will have the same result: quality time for both of you!
The third and our last suggestion involves the universal language, shared by all living creatures from lions to dolphins: having fun! Complete you weekly one-on-one sessions with your dog with a day or two where you do nothing else for 15 minutes except have fun.
Play catch, do some gentle wrestling, run around the house chasing each other, whatever… Goofy stuff, fun stuff, no rules need apply, just let it go wherever both of your comfort zones meet and enjoy it!
Some time to unwind and bond with your pet will do miracles for your stress level and your overall psychical health. Feelings like anxiety, depression, being upset or worried, will literally dissolve into thin air, even if just for those moments.
You’ll be a great play partner and owner to your pet while getting just as much benefits in return. Again, combining two positive outcomes for the price of just 15 minutes is such a huge bargain.
Practice the three suggestions each week and you’ll get into a routine that will last you a lifetime. How you split the days between the three activities is up to you. Make sure to adjust them to match both your style and that of your dog. Any point on this list is a great idea so don’t feel bad if you decide to go for 5 days of exercise and just one for cooking and one for playing, or the other way around, 5 days just for playing etc.
Include at least one day of each and there can be no bad decisions from there on.
Hope you’ll find the article interesting and I hope you’ll put it to good practice. Most importantly, enjoy!