Dogs are simple creatures and they don’t need a lot to be happy. In the article to follow, we’re going to unpack six simple things you can do to keep your animal’s spirits high. From making exercise a priority to spending a little bit more on nutrition, these are proven strategies that should bear fruit in the long run.

Get the diet right

Food is fuel, and dogs need plenty of it.

But buying poor-quality, mass produced fare full of additives and preservatives can do more harm than good.

Speak to your vet about the type of product you should be shopping for, because a dog’s breed and age should be factored in as well.

Inevitably you might be spending slightly more on dog food every month, but it’s an important investment.

Buy toys for your dog

One of the best ways to bond with your dog – and bring it joy – is to play with it. Novelty toys, chews, brain games and balls are all good options. Shop around and experiment with what’s available online. It’s a cost-effective way to burn some energy too

Don’t leave your dog alone for long periods

While there are breeds that cope with solitude better than most (pugs, chow chows and the bull terrier come to mind), no canine is going to be content alone for long hours of the day.

Ask your boss if it’s okay to bring your dog to work, or investigate whether it’d be possible to work from home a few days a week.

Then there are always daycare centers like Under One Woof, which are designed to keep your dog stimulated when you’re not around.

Incorporate long walks into the routine

A good walk doesn’t just give your dog a chance to stretch its legs – it gives him an opportunity to sniff his surroundings and meet other dogs.

Make these outings a regular occurrence – one that you repeat at the same time of the day throughout the week.

Don’t let negative energy get between you and your animal

We’ve said this many times in articles past, but it bears repeating: energy is all-important. You want to watch your energy at all times because you’re the one in charge. Scold your dog harshly – as you might a person – and you’ll obscure the message you’re trying to send. Your dog might respond to your raised voice excitedly, or he might become fearful.

Instead, positively reinforce good behavior with treats and refrain from raising your voice when you don’t get what you want.

The idea isn’t to go easy on him – it’s to maintain control by keeping emotional triggers like a raised voice to a minimum.

Give your dog a home

Dogs are members of the family, so give them a dedicated space they can call their own, complete with bedding, toys and treats.

Get these six steps right and you’ll have a satiated, contented animal that’s tethered to a structured routine while getting the stimulation required to keep him happy.

Good luck.

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