Top 10 New Year’s Resolution for Dog Owners

By Dog Coach Francis

Hooray, it’s a new year! Time for new adventures, new experiences and new beginnings. A time for us to get organized. For this new year, I am going to share a few new year’s resolution ideas for dog owners. Let’s make these resolutions simple and fun to be effective.

1.“I will walk my dog on a regular basis”

Like people, our dogs need exercise too. Both physical and mental stimulation is very important to keep a dog healthy. Dogs love to be out, to run and sniff. Walking your dog on a regular basis is also great in building your relationship. After all, we also need the exercise after all the holiday feast, right?

2.“I will play with my dog more often.”

“Idle hands are the workshop of the devil.” That’s what was taught to us by our teachers and Salesian priest during my younger years studying in Don Bosco. We were kept away from trouble by being busy with school work, music and sports. It was so much fun. Now imagine your dog with nothing else to do. Yes, dogs sleep most of the time but they too get bored. Boredom is one of the top causes of behavioral issues in dogs. Most can be solved by giving them something to do, maybe a job they were bred for. Play fetch, a game of tug or hide and seek. Be creative and remember to make it fun.

3.“I will help animal welfare groups”

Hundreds, even thousands of dogs die in shelters each year. There are a lot of things you can do to help. You can donate, volunteer, foster or adopt. Research have shown that people who help others, be it human or animals, tend to be significantly happier and less depressed than those who do not; by helping animal welfare groups, you too can gain new friends this year. Do good, feel good.

 4.“I will keep my dog’s vaccination up to date.”

It is easy for some to shrug off a notification from the vet regarding their dog’s scheduled check-up or vaccination but it will also cost more when health issues that could have been prevented were ignored. Feel free to talk to your vet about your observations regarding your dog’s health. A visit to a clinic is more productive and effective than any advice you get from online forums.

 5.“I will spay/neuter my pet.”

Spaying is the removal of a female animal’s reproductive organs so she cannot get pregnant while neutering is the removal of male animal’s testicles so that he cannot breed a female, both procedures should be done surgically with a licensed vet.

Spayed dogs experience less stress and discomfort when they are in heat, they are also free from uterine cancer and they have less chance to have mammary cancer. Neutered dogs on the other hand are less likely to display undesired behavior such as marking, humping or aggression; neutering can also prevent testicular cancer. Ultimately, spayed and neutered dogs will not breed accidentally which is by far the most humane way to save animals lives.

 6.“I will improve my dog’s diet.”

 A nutritious, balanced diet is important to keeping your dog healthy and happy. Check your dog’s weight regularly. Keeping track will help you assess if you are providing too much or too little food. Your dog’s diet differs from people. Providing table food is not advisable. There are advocates of BARF (Biologically Appropriate Raw Food) who promotes raw feeding and grain free dog food. I suggest you do your homework in providing the best food for your dog.

 7.“I will teach my dog at least a trick or two.”

You can always teach a dog a new trick, yep even older dogs. You just need to be patient and you have to provide lots of love, understanding and rewards. Teaching your dog some tricks is an awesome way of bonding with your dog. Start with the simple tricks like “High Five”, “Speak”, “Play dead” or even as simple as a “Kiss”. Keep it fun and rewarding for you and your dog. 

 8.“I will put an end to my dog’s behavior problems.”

 Does your dog have a habit of jumping on people? Is your dog an excessive barker?

How many shoes or plants have you dog destroyed? There is no such thing as ‘one way’ when teaching desired behaviors though management and prevention is always a good option. It is best to ask help from a Force Free professional which brings us to the next resolution.

 9.“I will train my dog using Force Free training.”

 Force Free dog training means no shock, no pain, no choke, no fear, no physical force, no physical molding, no compulsion-based methods is employed to train or care for a pet.

Use rewards like treats, toys, play and lots of praise. Physical punishment and other traditional (old school), coercive or aversive training methods and intimidation are detrimental and unnecessary. Read more about Force Free Training by visiting

 10.“I will groom my dog on a regular basis.”

A dog’s coat will give you the first clue of their general health. Grooming is also a good way to keep them healthy. All dogs need regular grooming, depending on the breed, age and health of your pet. Dogs do shed, so using a nice good de shedder will help. Brushing their teeth is also part of their grooming, use dog friendly toothpaste. In grooming it is also important to make sure it is safe for you and your dogs. Doggies Choice Pet Care Products has a great variety of products to suite your grooming needs.

 What are your New Year resolutions? Feel free to leave comments and suggestions and share how you plan to keep your resolutions on our Facebook page. Please like Doggies Choice Pet Care Products for more info on pet care grooming and training, updates, freebies and share your New Year resolutions. To learn more about Force Free Dog Training like Dog Coach Francis on Facebook or visit