As humans, we put a lot of meaning in tracking time, and celebrating milestones, anniversaries, and other important dates. As we head into a new decade, many of us will attend parties, make resolutions, and celebrate the unlimited potential that awaits in the new year. And our dogs? They will have no idea what we are celebrating, but they will be happy to be part of the celebration no matter what, because they love being with us on any day of the year.
Staying in With Your Dog on New Year’s Eve
Staying home for New Year’s Eve becomes more popular each year, for a variety of reasons. This holds true whether you are in a permanent dwelling or spending New Year’s Eve in your RV or camper. You can save money, avoid intoxicated drivers out on the roads, and spend quality time with loved ones instead of navigating large crowds of strangers. The best part for dog owners is that you can ring in the new year with your dog.
Snacks You Can Share with Your Dog
When planning your New Year’s Eve snacks, there are a variety of treats that you can share with your dog. Make sure to include carrots, cucumbers, bell pepper strips and green beans on your crudites trays, and some mild hard cheeses like cheddar or American on your charioteer platters for your pup. You can even toast with some Dög Pawrignon. Just be sure you do not confuse it with your own libations, since your pallet might not be ready for notes of salmon.
The Last Walk of the Year
Early in the day, as long as the weather permits, plan one last epic walk with your dog to wrap up 2019. This way your dog will be happy to snuggle up with you if you’re having a quiet night watching the famous ball drop at midnight Eastern Time in Times Square. Check out https://www.traillink.com to find local walking and hiking trails near you.
Kiss Your Pup at Midnight
The tradition of kissing your loved ones at midnight comes from German and English tradition, and believers say that the person you kiss at midnight will be integral to the whole year ahead. When you stay home to celebrate the ringing in of the New Year, you can kiss your pup at midnight, since it is a safe bet that he or she will continue to hold a special place in your heart each and every year.
Going to a Pawty On New Year’s Eve
Depending where you live, you might be able to find a local “pawty” or “yappy hour” that welcomes pets. Some pubs and bars have started to organize events for dog owners to attend with their dog. If you live near Chicago, you can attend the Ring in 2020 with Live Like Roo event or the New Year’s Kiss at Dog Bar if you live in St. Petersburg, Florida. Bringfido.com is a great resource for dog events, as are Facebook, Eventbrite and Google.
If you attend a party with your dog, remember that your dog could be intimidated by loud, inebriated people or large crowds. If your dog is timid or not socialized for situations like this, you and your pup might be happier staying at home. If you do venture out, make sure that you use a harness or collar that your dog cannot escape from should they become scared and skittish, and be willing to leave early if your pup is anxious.
New Year’s Resolutions for Dogs
Dogs are not like us; they don’t beat themselves up worrying about behaviors that need to be changed or things that they want to do better. That’s one of the reasons we love them so much. Because of this outlook on life, your dog wouldn’t understand a New Year resolution even if they spoke English or communicated with words. However, including your dog in your own healthy life goals for 2020 can be fun for you and your dog and help you stick to them.
If you are promising yourself that you will exercise more, spend more time outside, or lead a healthier lifestyle, your dog will likely be a willing partner. Instead of paying hefty monthly fees to join a gym, you can invest in equipment for a new dog-inclusive sport like agility or rally obedience, both of which involve substantial physical activity from the humans. You can make a plan to check out more local walking trails or find a group that conducts organized pack walks so that you and your dog can make new friends. No matter how you decide to increase your activity or lead a healthier, happier life, your dog will be happy for all of the good choices you make for both of you.