Sometimes life is a bed of roses, and we have our friends, significant others, and family with us when things are going really well. But there are also those cloudy days which make you want to run far, far away. Perhaps your boss decided to take out his anger on you. Maybe you didn’t get the grades you expected. Perhaps, the person you cared for the most just left you. But where do you run, when the whole world seems like a dark miserable place?
To your furry four-level friends, of course! From Hachi to Air Buddies, Hollywood has never spared any effort to portray the beautiful relationship between dogs and their human counterparts. Your journey with your pet dog may not always be smooth, particularly when they chew all your shoes and cushions, or fall prey to illness. Yet it’s one of the most rewarding experiences, particularly when you see how unselfishly and unconditionally loving they can be. Because, remember the Budweiser advertisement? It ends with one of the most heartwarming messages ever: “Because your friends are waiting for your return”.
Your dog will always think you perfect and care about you, no matter what the world might think or say. Your pet may never actually demand special treatment – beyond the occasional ear scratching– but their unconditional gift of love makes them deserving of all the love you can give! So go ahead, read on, and find out how you can make your furry friends happy!
11 Tips on How to Make Your Dog Happy
1 Celebrate special occasions
There are some milestones that deserve to be celebrated: the birth of a baby in the family, a new job. Whatever it is, chances are that your dog has to miss out on the food because “human-food” isn’t always the best for them. Now, with the growth of specialist caterers, even your dog(s) can have their share of fun! Food prepared to order for your dog? What could be better? You could throw a party for your dog on their birthday, gift them toys, and even invite their furry friends over for Doggie’s Day Out! Your dog will surely lick your face to say “Thank you!” Pamper them, we say!
2 Go swimming!
Most dogs take to the water with a surprising eagerness! It not only allows them to cool down, but also provides them with exercise. You can take them to the nearest pond, lake or even an inflatable backyard swimming pool! But be warned, not all dogs are equally adept at swimming – some may just be afraid of the water, some others may find it difficult to swim because the poor things just sink when submerged in water. For these dogs, just turn on the sprinklers and have a whole lot of fun!
3 Talk to them
If you love dogs, we know we don’t need to tell you this: your furry friend needs all the attention you can give them. Going without their beloved human friends for long periods of time can make them exceptionally sad and depressed. They’ve been waiting at the window with sad, puppy eyes, waiting for your return each day. The least you can do is talk to them, give them a pat or scratch their ears, and tell them you care. Just try talking, and they’ll give you their complete attention. A simple gesture of affection can go a long way, particularly for creatures as loving and emotionally receptive as dogs!
4 Go for walks everyday
Dogs lucky enough to live out on a farm, or a house with a huge backyard, have a lot more space to run around and get some exercise compared to their city cousins. Dogs love the sights, smells and simple pleasures of a walk. But if you live in the city, chances are that your dog has to stay cooped up in an apartment all day waiting for your return! Don’t just let your dog out, but take them out on a walk or run. It not only helps them to stay fit and happy, but also helps them to lose a lot of calories [particularly if they see a cat!]
5 Provide a comfortable shelter
Summers mean strawberries, beaches, ice creams and fun in the sun! But for your dog, it might not be the most terrifically awesome time ever. Dogs tend to feel the heat a lot more than we do, and they have very few means of cooling off. So build them a comfortable shelter indoors, allow them to stay inside with the air conditioning turned on, and give them lots of water to stay hydrated. Try to restrict walks to the early hours of the morning, or after sunset, when the temperatures are comparatively cooler than the rest of the day. Make sure they get plenty of clean, fresh water to drink!
6 Don’t chain them up
You open your eyes and suddenly you can’t move beyond a limit. You see something you need, something urgent, but you can’t get it. There’s something choking your throat, making it hard to breath. And then you sit up in bed, thinking “Oh what a nightmare!” But just think – this can be an everyday reality for your pet. Be considerate, give them room for freedom. If you must put them on a leash, don’t use prongs – contrary to popular belief, mothers don’t bite their young on the neck to teach how to behave! At the least, select collars and leashes that will keep your pet comfortable – and thus happy!
7 Take them to Doggie Spa
At the end of a long week, sometimes we feel the need to pamper ourselves with some spa time. Have you ever wondered if your dog might like the same? These spas offer a line of treatments for your dog, ranging from mudpacks to mani-pedi-s. There are spas offering messages, hydrotherapy, and a whole range of other services. These are mostly done by professionals, so you can be sure that your pet is having a fun time but under the supervision of experts. Added bonus: It’s a great place to socialize for your pets too. If you get a beaming smile from your dog in return, don’t be too surprised!
8 Feed Them Good Quality Food
Being a dog in a human world is serious business, my friends. One of the most important guidelines of pet ownership is creating a healthy diet for your pet. The wrong food can lead to your dog being inactive and unhealthy. The key to finding the right food for your dog includes talking to your local veterinary doctor rather than pushy departmental salesmen. You may also need to find the best quality commercially, produced food which contains Vitamin E preservatives. Better food makes for a better behaved and happier dog!
9 Make Scheduled Appointments with Your Vet
This really follows from our previous point. Part of a dog’s daily routine includes a moderate amount of exercise, the right food, and lots of affection (for yours, and theirs, mental well-being!). Key to a “Healthy Dog, Happy Dog” mantra are regular visits to the veterinary doctor. While you may think you know what is best for your dog, trust us when we say that the vet probably is better equipped to handle your dog’s ailments. De-worm your dog, help them keep flees away, and protect them from hurting themselves by clipping their nails: you might just become their hero. Take time out of your schedule to groom your dog!
10 Play with them
Just because they have four legs, doesn’t mean they don’t need attention. As with children, daily interaction –even games of fetch or “catch me if you can” – is essential. Dogs love learning new tricks, and the admiration it gets them! That’s how a dog learns to love you, and vice-versa. If that isn’t enough incentive, remember that dogs get fat too. We are not ones for body shaming, but running out of breath after climbing up the stairs? Even your dog won’t be happy about it! Dogs love playing, particularly in open green spaces where there are squirrels to chase, wrong balls to bring back, and so many distractions!
11 Love them!
Sometimes, we may have an enormous workload, or perhaps a new baby to care for: and we just can’t find enough time to cover all our daily chores! The ones who get neglected most are our pets, perhaps because they never wail for our attention. Doesn’t it break your heart to think of your dog, standing there just waiting for you to talk or play or even just sit with you? Try to take out a little time for your pets too, because they need your love just as much. Go on, pamper them, cuddle them and tickle them: just find a way to return their everlasting and unconditional love.