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Remember your resolutions as 2011 gave way to 2012?

 No judgment here, that’s the easy part, making the wish list of self-improvement. The struggle comes with follow through and maintaining motivation in mid-March, and April, and May, and … Well, that’s the beauty of a fresh start!

January 2013 begins in just a few days and it’s time to dust off your motivation and set some new – and attainable—personal goals.

For many of us, being healthier (losing weight, eating better, getting fit) tops the list. In the spirit of resolutions—and more importantly, keeping those resolutions—we want to share a little inspiration for including your pet.
January is “National Walk Your Pet Month.” Certainly as one of Idaho’s coldest months, this could be just the extra push we all need when the days are dark and cold and the fire inside is warm and personal resolutions seem out of reach. 

You’ve heard it before, there are a lot of reasons to walk your dog regularly, here are just a few:

 

  • Fewer problems with behavior
  • Weight control
  • Mental stimulation of being outside
  • Bonding together

The length and intensity of your walk should be based on your dog’s age, health, and agility. In our family, we noticed that as our older dog was in her golden years, a 15-minute stroll was more than enough for her.  However, the young dog we recently adopted from the Canyon County Animal Shelter is a breed known to have a lot of energy. This girl needs her daily walk! (And she’ll take two if you’re willing.) On days when the streets are clear of ice and snow, I connect her leash and halter to my bike handlebars and the two of us hit the streets. She runs alongside full steam for more than 40 minutes. While the walk is supposed to be all about her, I find the time outside is beneficial for me, too. I am unplugged for just a moment (even with my mad multitasking skills I can’t manage a bike, a dog, a leash, and a cell phone at once), taking in the sunset, admiring neighborhood holiday light displays, and  greeting other people. We both return feeling refreshed.

Below you’ll find links to articles which offer even more motivation to keep you moving, and include tips on training your pooch how to behave when you’re out and about:

Does My Dog Really Need Daily Walks?    
The Benefits of Walking Your Dog 
Four Reasons Why You Should Walk Your Dog

We have had particularly bitterly cold weather the past few days, be cautious with your pet’s health when spending time outdoors.  In addition, de-icer products used on driveways and sidewalks can be harmful to your pet’s sensitive paws and should never be ingested.
Wishing you and your furry family members a safe, prosperous, and fit New Year!

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