5 min read

7 Ways to Improve Your Dog's Wellness in 2022


By Tim Falk

Published: 12/10/2021, edited: 11/11/2022

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New Year’s resolutions are often focused on bettering ourselves, but why not turn your attention to ways you can make your dog’s life better?

If you’re anything like us, you’re always looking for ways to give your dog a little more spring in their step. And if you’re making your fur-baby’s health and happiness a priority in 2022, here are 7 simple ways to improve your dog’s wellness in the year ahead.

dog eating kibble

Switch to a better diet

Your dog’s path to wellness in 2022 starts with their diet. When you feed a high-quality diet, you’re doing your bit to maximize the chances of your pet living a long and healthy life. 

So take a moment to think about what you’re currently feeding your pup. Is it a premium food? Is it perfectly suited to the nutritional needs of their age and lifestyle? 

If you’re unsure, ask your vet about the best diet for your fur-baby. If they recommend switching to a new food, transition gradually to reduce the risk of any stomach upset for your dog. Then, monitor your dog in the weeks ahead to see what impact a change in diet has on their coat, their energy levels, and their overall health.

Get active

The other major ingredient your dog needs for a healthy lifestyle is regular exercise. Physical activity offers a long list of benefits for your pup, but right at the top of the list is the fact that it helps them stay in a healthy weight range, reducing the risk of a huge range of health problems. 

Exercise also tires your dog out, which means they’re less likely to turn their excess energy into destructive behavior. Plus, it offers important mental stimulation for pups. Even better, you get a chance to raise your heart rate too and spend more quality time with your pooch.

So take a hike, go for a swim, or just go for a walk in the park. Getting active with your dog is easy, but it provides a huge range of long-term benefits.

Exercise their mind

Don’t just exercise your dog’s body in 2022; give their mind a workout too. Mental stimulation is a crucial ingredient in any dog’s overall wellbeing. It keeps their mind sharp, gives them the responsibility of having a job to do, and will ensure that they’re tired but happy at the end of the day. 

The simplest way to give your pup’s brain a boost is to make training sessions part of your daily routine. It’s easy to do and won’t take up much time in your schedule — all you need is a goal in mind, a few training treats, and a dog who's eager to please. 

Short sessions work best, and keeping them fun and using a rewards-based approach will leave your dog wanting more. And it doesn’t matter whether you focus on obedience training or even teaching your dog a trick or two, as it will all benefit for your dog’s wellbeing.

Looking for more ways to give your dog’s brain a workout? Check out these 6 easy ways to give your dog more mental stimulation.

golden retriever standing on a table with a person standing in the background

Visit the vet

If your dog is fit and healthy, you might wonder whether there’s any point taking them to the vet for a check-up. But there definitely is — annual wellness exams are vital to ensure that your pup is in top health now and in the years to come.

A check-up every 12 months gives your vet a chance to make sure your dog is in the best possible shape. They can check whether your dog is in a healthy weight range, find out whether their dental hygiene is up to scratch, and detect any developing health issues (and take the necessary action) early. It might seem like a minor inconvenience in the short-term, but regular vet visits will be worth it in the long run.

Related: How Often Should I Take My Dog to the Vet?

Let them be themselves

Sometimes it seems like we ask a lot of our fur-babies so they can fit into our world.

Meeting new people? We want them to sit calmly when all they want to do is jump all over the person and lick them half to death.

Going for a walk? We want them to stick tight to our side on a leash rather than exploring every interesting sight, smell, and sound they come across.

Doing something perfectly natural like barking? Don’t even think about it or the neighbors will complain.

So to thank your pup for being a good boy or girl, sometimes you need to give your dog a chance to just be a dog. For some dogs, that means finding the best off-leash park near you and letting your pup run, sniff, play, and explore to their heart’s content.

For others, that means providing outlets for those natural, instinctive behaviors that aren’t always welcome in some parts of life. If your pooch loves to dig, for example, create a special sand pit or dig zone for them in your garden. If they have a strong prey drive (this basically means they love chasing anything small and fluffy), let them try a sport like lure coursing.

Basically, it’s all about finding a way to let your dog be themselves. It’s a whole lot of fun for them, and very rewarding for you at the same time.

four people posing with a golden retriever dog

Focus on quality time together

There’s one thing your dog wants to do more than anything else in the year ahead: spend more time with you! So why not take steps to let them do exactly that?

Our pups thrive on interaction, love, and attention, so shower your pet with these as often as possible in the year ahead. How can you do that? Maybe you could ask your boss about the possibility of working from home more often, or taking your dog to work. Maybe you could look at planning more dog-friendly family outings so that your pup doesn’t have to miss out on any of the fun. Or maybe you could just make a commitment to extra cuddle time on the couch on those quiet nights at home.

Whatever you do, as long as you and your pup are together, your fur-baby will love every second.

Invest in a wellness plan

Last but not least, boost your dog’s wellbeing in 2022 by investing in a pet wellness plan. Wellness plans provide coverage for the cost of all those routine vet care expenses that crop up throughout the year — vet check-ups, vaccinations, parasite prevention, and the like. This makes it easier to manage the cost of pet healthcare and ensure that they stay in the best possible shape all year long.

Many pet insurers offer wellness cover as an optional extra, but you can also buy standalone wellness plans. Be sure to compare a range of plans, and read the fine print closely to check what limits apply, before choosing cover for your pet.

If you want financial assistance to help cover routine vet bills, check out Wag! Wellness plans. Three base plans are available to suit your needs and budget, plus optional add-ons so you can tailor coverage to your pet's unique needs. Start comparing pet wellness plans today and get reimbursed for routine pet care costs within 24 hours.

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