I love spoiling my dog. I always feel guilty if I “spoil” my kids and wonder if I’m making poor choices as a mother, but I have no doubts when it comes to pampering my dog. She’s only going to be with us for a few short years and I want to make sure her life is as healthy, happy, and full of love as possible. Spoiling kids is frowned upon by society because it often results in children with a perpetual sense of entitlement, but if I spoil my dogs and cats, that just makes me a crazy, obsessed cat-lady or dog lady- I can live with that. 🙂
Besides, my dogs desire are usually pretty simple. She wants to play ball, go for a long run, sniff the horses and cats, and eat as much yummy food as possible. She wants my time and attention and she wants to be near me as much as possible. I don’t think that’s too much to ask and I’m usually eager to indulge her whenever possible.
One of my favorite things to do is schedule a “pup party” day where we do something special for our collective brood of pets. We celebrate them and all the ways they enrich our lives. We bake or order special pup-cake treats, shop for new toys, go to the park, play ball, rub bellies, go to the doggie spa, and tell all of favorite stories about “that time when…”.
While throwing a “pup party” may seem extreme, you can choose a few little ways to spoil your fur baby everyday. Try picking out a few of the ideas below to show your dogs how much you love them.
10 Ways to Spoil Your Dog
1. FOOD! The number one way to any dog’s heart is usually through yummy food. Cooking for your dog is a great way to spend time with him in the kitchen and fill his belly with deliciousness. But if you don’t have time, desire, or skills to cook from scratch there are other alternatives available that are just as good. Check your local business directory to see if there are any local bakeries that make special treats for dogs. It’s an easy way to get home-baked goodies for your pups without doing it yourself. You can also try adding BOOST ME mighty beef dog food topper to your dog’s food on occasion to add the power of a raw diet to any meal. Your dog will love the taste and even super-picky eaters flock to their food bowls when they smell BOOST ME.
2. WALKS! Going for a walk is the highlight of my dog’s day. She loves to explore the neighborhood and see what’s changed since the last time she visited a certain bush, rock, or pole. To help keep her interested, we alternate our walking routes on occasion. This gives her new spaces to explore and new smells to experience. I usually walk a new route on my own without her first to check for aggressive dogs in backyard fences, and potential hazards along the new route. Sometimes I like to surprise her and take her out for an extra walk on a nice day. As long as she’s not worn out, she’s always up for an extra trip around the neighborhood to visit her favorite people and dogs.
3. GRANDMA! A trip to grandma’s house is just as exciting for my dog as it is for my kids. She knows she’s going to get extra treats, lots of belly rubs, and probably a new toy from grandma when we visit. Say the word “grand-” and she’s at the door ready to go. One of my favorite ways to spoil her is to visit the people she loves.
4. LEARN! Dogs love to learn new things. Some breeds are even known to become depressed or destructive if not kept busy with tricks, training, puzzles, or a particular “job” to occupy their time. If you can’t enroll your dog in an obedience or training class, try watching a few videos online or sign up for a virtual class. Your local library will have a section of dog training books if you’re a little more old-school, but information on how to teach even an old dog new tricks is readily available. Be sure to motivate your dog to learn with a few irresistible dog treats like TruDog’s TREAT ME packs.
5. RIDE! My dog loves to ride in the car, and many dogs would give anything to take a trip with you even if it’s just cruising to the local root beer stand for an ice cream cone. Go for a ride around the neighborhood just to please your dog.
6. PLAY! Dogs are always up for a game of fetch, a trip to the dog park, or tug with a favorite toy. I can’t count how many times I’ve been happily working away and been surprised with a slobbery stuffed turkey plopped on my keyboard or a well-worn Mr. Squiggles right in the face. And there’s always a grinning puppy with her rear in the air, tail wagging furiously when I look up, begging me to play. I spoil my dog by putting work aside for five minutes to play when she asks me.
7. SWIM! My dog isn’t thrilled about baths, in fact, you’d think she was dying if she’s in the shower without a human companion suffering alongside her. Her howls of dismay could break glass and make grown men weep. But when I ask her if she wants to go for a swim, her fear of being wet is nowhere to be found. She’s all in for a trip to the beach, lake, or a friend’s pool party with other dogs. Swimming is great exercise for dogs and is gentle on joints and easy for dogs of all ages. My dog has her own life vest and we always clean her ears after swimming to keep her healthy.
8. BELLY-RUBS! I think my dog’s favorite thing in the world is belly rubs. She unashamedly asks for them from nearly everyone she meets. Paws in the air, goofy grin, tail wagging, she waits patiently for you to decide to rub the belly. It’s her favorite indulgence and it’s easy to spoil her with all the belly rubs she wants.
9. MASSAGE! One of the best things I’ve ever done for my dog is learn how to give doggie massages. They help her relax at bedtime, ease sore muscles after a long run, and help improve flexibility and decrease pain in her joints. Massage is one of her favorite treats and I’m happy “give in”.
10. LOVE! Spoiling my dog isn’t a one-sided deal, she gives me just as much love as I give her- sometimes more. I try to pack as much love as possible into each day. My dog serves as an example of what unconditional love looks like in practice. She’s the bright spot in my dark days, and she never fails to make me smile. She simply makes my life better, and for that, I owe her all the love I can give her.
Do you know your dog’s love language? My dog is one of the very best things in my life. I love spoiling her in all the ways that tell her, “I love you”. What’s your favorite way to spoil your dog?
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