What a dog wants?

Yesterday was Diva’s 2nd birthday. As you can see, she celebrated in style. :-0

She received lots of good wishes on our Facebook page, had a game of frisbee, worked on a few tricks we are learning, got adjusted by Dr. Woodford and celebrated with a nice meaty bone at the end of the day. What she didn’t get were lots of presents, a cake or a party. Not that I’m opposed to those things, but rather I encourage dog owners to remember what’s important to a dog.

If your dog could write their birthday “wish list” I’m willing to bet it would look something like this:

For my birthday I want:

– to get off the beaten path. How about finding a hiking trail, nature preserve or wooded park to explore. Your dog experiences much of their world through their sense of smell. Allowing them the opportunity of sniffing earth, twigs, leaves and all the smells of critters who live there is to give your dog the joy of “being dog”.

– A nice meaty bone from the butcher. No need to cook it (in fact you should not cook it. Cooking creates dryness and splintering) The bone can be fresh or direct from the freezer. Your dog is a carnivore. Long before we began creating and marketing dog food, canines ate flesh and bone. This type of feeding (raw feeding) is becoming more prevalent today as consumers become more educated about the poor quality of many commercial dog foods.

– A message and relief for my achy body. Our dogs get sore and out of alignment just as we do. The difference is, they can’t as easily tell us when a shoulder aches or a hip feels tight. It is not uncommon for behavior problems to have under lying health problems attributed to years of wear and tear on the canine body. A periodic visit to a DVM Chiropracter or message therapist for stretching and adjustment can do your 4 – legged athlete a world of good.

– A little time and attention and someone to throw the ball. Your dog craves your attention, but there are better ways to give it than just sitting on the couch together. A game of fetch, frisbee or time spent learning a new trick is the kind of stimulation that dogs need in order to remain mentally healthy.

– Something to chew on. When your dog is home alone or hanging out by themselves they can get bored just like you and I. We might read, watch television or do a puzzle but our dogs have fewer options. They might sleep, bark, dig, pace or chew…so providing interesting toys they CAN chew on is one of the best ways to insure less mischief when boredom sets in.

I’ll confess that Diva might still get a little “bling” in the form of a new leash or collar. 😉  But the reality is, that’s more for my enjoyment than hers.

So whether today is your dog’s birthday or just another day…remember that your furry friend is a dog, not human. When  we consider their needs before our own emotional ones…well, then we are really loving them the best we can.

Happy Birthday Diva. I hope the day was pretty much like all the others we spend together.