Owning a dog can bring you the greatest of joys. Their boundless energy, love, and enthusiasm is infectious and can draw families closer together. Every day they’ll find new ways to make you feel loved and happy.
But sometimes we forget just how sensitive dogs can be. Illness or injury can make them despondent. If they misbehave and we have to tell them off they sometimes don’t understand. If they are rescue dogs they may have underlying psychological conditions that can be difficult to shake.
So it’s especially important that we know how to keep dogs happy so they can continue to bring happiness into our lives.
Walks with dogs are an excellent way to keep them fit and happy. It is also an instinctual need. The ancestors of modern domestic dogs had huge habitats which they roamed constantly. This instinct is unshakeable and dogs need to know their own surroundings well. It’s also a chance for them to meet other dogs. As pack animals, dogs need to socialize. Though they may not get on with other dogs at first, keeping them in contact with others trains them to relax.
“Their sensitive noses can detect messages and signs that keep them informed of changes to their surroundings and keep them orientated. For domesticated dogs, they need assurance from us as they investigate. As far as they are concerned, we are their pack leader and if we don’t tour our habitat with them regularly it can break down bonds,” says Theresa Eubanks, author for Last Minute Writing and Researchpapersuk.
In the wild, canines play all the time. Play, such as wrestling and running, is an instinctual rehearsal for the hunt. Though we don’t spend our time (hopefully) chasing down wild animals across frozen landscapes, this need for play is still vital to creating bonds.
All dogs need to be stimulated in both body and mind. A bored dog can be troublesome, and if your dog is chewing the carpet or the furniture, it’s a sign that they are under-stimulated. Make sure you have plenty of toys for them to play with and tricks to teach them. Tricks are important for building obedience in them. If they have a habit of destroying their toys, don’t worry. Dog toys aren’t meant to last forever and if your dog pulls something apart it shows they have healthy teeth and claws.
A glum dog could be a sign that something deeper is wrong. Dogs don’t always have the means to show us what is wrong so it’s important that we keep a check on them.
“Some dogs don’t like visiting the vet. This is usually because it’s an unfamiliar setting. But if you get into a routine of visiting the vet the dog will start to trust your vet better. Your vet, in turn, will be able to notice the changes in your dog as it ages and anticipate any potential health issues,” adds Dan Bynum, dog lover and contributor to Draftbeyond and Writinity.
It’s difficult to resist a dog when it sits at your feet asking for scraps. All animals are hard-wired to get food whenever it’s available, so you shouldn’t feel bad in refusing. If you don’t you are contributing to not only bad behavior but also potential health risks.
For dogs, baths can be quite divisive. Some dogs absolutely hate baths and hide when they are even mentioned.
But bath-time is the perfect way of bonding with your dog. Dogs are into all kinds of outside activity and can pick up germs very easily which might make them sick. In addition, if it’s warm, a smelly dog is no fun to be around. So bathe your dog regularly and it will soon learn to enjoy the tub.