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Are You a Responsible Pet Owner?

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Bolt, the Yorkie-Poo guest blogger, on hand to give Party Marty, Jessie and the Spirit of Bo a much-needed break: Hey, fellow pet lovers! TGIF!!! Yes, I am ready to embrace the weekend! So much to do, so little time! I am hoping to squeeze as much fun and sun in as I can before Autumn settles in and brings with it cooler temperatures.

I have a question for you today. Think about it before you answer it, however. Ready? Here goes…

Are you a responsible pet owner? Of course you are, right? Well, maybe you are; maybe you’re not. In my book, a responsible pet owner is one who keeps the food bowl filled, the water chilled, and the treats flowing. Nevertheless, there are other ways to elevate your status (especially in your dog’s eyes) to “My human is THE BEST!”

Thanks to care2.com, I have a few suggestions on how to become (or continue to be!) a responsible pet owner.

  • Give your pet space. Some dogs need lots of space; others need less. Learn to read your dog’s stress signals to determine if he likes to be out and about with others in a crowd or prefers the comfort of a small, cozy environment at home. Me? I embrace tranquility and a cozy environment. All I need is a couple of big pillows upon which to lounge with little activity going on around me and I am in dog heaven!
  • Pay attention to the sounds around your dog. Too loud? Too quiet? Some dogs can become very anxiety-ridden when there are a lot of sounds around them, especially if the sounds are loud and confusing. If a dog cannot determine from where a sound is coming, he cannot ensure his comfort and safety. Dogs also hear at a much higher frequency than humans do, so they will hear things you don’t even know are around you.
  • Treat your dog as a dog, not a human. Sure, you love us. We get that. However, you do not need to dress us up or give us bear hugs and constant pats on the head. In fact, we really don’t like that and don’t understand why you want to hug us. That is not our style of communication.
  • Train us well, but train us humanely. Focus on the positive instead of the negative. Don’t like us barking at the door? Don’t yell at us when we do that. Instead, show us what to positively do instead.
  • Provide us opportunities for stimulation. Yes, we get bored. We cannot always entertain ourselves, so stop what you are doing for a bit and play with us. Teach us new tricks; give us food in a puzzle toy instead of a bowl; mix it up a bit! Spend a few quality moments with us each day and we will be forever grateful!

Now…go have a fabulous weekend and spend some time with your pet! In my neck of the woods, it is shaping up to be a great weekend to get out to the dog park…or at least lounge in the sun in the living room!

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