December is a time to enjoy a welcomed change of pace, lots of excitement and a departure from the ordinary. It’s also an opportunity to focus on family. And in the Bil-Jac community, we know that means a family that is bound to have one or more four-legged members. What are our best tips for not only surviving the holidays — but thriving through the holidays, creating loads of wonderful memories along the way? Read on!
Beating Holiday Stress
The busy holiday months often bring hustle and bustle into our lives. The change of pace can be fun for us, right? Perhaps not for your best friend. Big changes in their daily routine actually creates stress! Do what you can to help them stick with a regular routine even though yours may have changed. Exercise can be a big help if you get out with your dog and stretch those legs every day. You'll be glad you did, as you'll find behavior will remain in check when you do!
When you're a dog family, routines are filled with activities and memories that include your best friend. However, with the holidays come parties and out of town guests. Have some fun by showing off some cool, new party tricks. Or, if your visitors are not as big a dog-lover as you, this could be a good time to give your dog a crate break. Aunt Millie gets her time with you, and your Best Friend gets a reprieve with her favorite blanket, and a safe place to hang out.
Keep it Tasty
When we buy a gift, we want it to be ideal ... beloved ... and perfect for the recipient, right? So while you're out, completing your holiday shopping, remember to pick up a few things for your pups. Some healthy treats ... and a few dog toys too. Trust us ... there’s nothing better than seeing that smile on our Best Friend's face when a new treat has been unveiled!
Studies show that just like humans, dogs benefit from exercise in ways far greater than just weight control and stress reduction. There are proven bonding opportunities that come from exercise, too. When you play tug-o-war, throw a ball or flying disc around .. even play hide and seek, stress diminishes and the fun comes alive!
Create Your Own Reality
Often, we put so much pressure on ourselves to have the perfect holiday season. And that pressure often gets picked up by our family members (including the four-legged ones)! Plan ahead and think through your holidays in a way that allows for flexibility, frolicking and love. Schedule a good balance of training for structure, and cuddle time for memories ... and you just might find that your holiday break was the best ever!