By: Matilda Davies | Reviewed by Dr. Clayton Greenway, B.Sc., DVM | Feb 19, 2019
Dogs need our attention. They’re bred to be social pack animals, and because of this innate instinct and domestication, they enjoy our company as well. This year, it’s time to make sure that our dog’s are getting enough of the attention they deserve. As the work days get longer and we’re forever connected to our phones, the time spent with our pups can suffer. Here are five ways you can spend more quality time with your dog in 2019.
1. Get out and move: dog bonding exercises
Take your dog outside and get some exercise. And, try to make a point of doing it every day. A solid walk or even jog (if your dog is healthy enough and built for it) are great ways to spend some quality bonding time together. Take a ball to the park or look for a local dog park where you can let your dog run loose. It’s a great opportunity for your pup to socialize with other dogs, build on your relationship together and meet with other pet parents at the same time. For breeds who need plenty of exercise, making this time a habit is key!
2. Let them in on your social life
The next time you go out, bring your dog with you! Check sites like Bring Fido to find local restaurants, bars, and coffee shops that will accommodate dogs. You can even create your own private dog park by asking friends to come over and bring their pooches—it’s a social gathering for both you and your furry companion.
3. Go make new friends together
One great thing about dogs is that they are naturally social animals and are often people magnets! Check for dog-friendly social events in your area—often they’re held at parks, community organizations, or even breweries. Events like this that allow you to mix and mingle are great ways to spend more quality time with your pup and make some new friends along the way.
4. Take them on vacation with you
The next time you book a vacation, don’t drop your dog off at the kennel—take them with you! There are plenty of pet-friendly rentals and hotels out there and lots of activities to do together that the both of you can enjoy such as hiking, swimming, exploring a city, and for many dogs, even time spent in the car is a great treat! Of course, when traveling it’s important to implement the appropriate pet safety precautions to keep both you and your pet safe on the road.
5. Make TV time play time
The next time you decide to binge your favorite show, spend some time in between episodes giving your dog some much-loved attention. This means staying off your phone and computer and instead, spending the time wrestling, playing tug of war, or simply giving lots of belly rubs and it’s a great way of building a bond with your dog. They’ll thank you for it.