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While humans may like to celebrate Valentine's Day with chocolate, flowers and dinner at a fine restaurant, your dog would likely prefer a day of doggy fun, not people fun. So what would your canine pal value most on a day for expressing love?
Your dog depends on you to supply the four key ingredients every dog needs for a happy life: food, shelter, safety and entertainment. When you supply these life basics, grounded on a foundation of respect, bond and trust and demonstrated by your continual, consistent leadership, your dog will know he is safe and loved, and thus will be more relaxed and content.
Following are some canine-friendly tips for how to show your special affection for your dog.
Get some exercise. A spirited walk together-whether to your local dog park or exploring a new neighborhood or trail-is always a great way to bond.
Give him a new toy. Puzzle toys such as the BusterÂ® Cube are especially fun, as they provide tasty treats. Dogs also love sturdy squeaker toys and toys like those made by KONGÂ®, which you can fill with treats for hours of satisfying chewing. To make the fun last even longer, fill the toy with peanut butter and then place it in the freezer before giving it to your delighted dog.
Treat your dog to a grooming session. If you opt for do-it-yourself grooming, start with a warm bath using gentle pet shampoo, followed by a soothing rinse and a vigorous towel-drying.
Take a trip to the pet store (one that welcomes leashed dogs) and allow your dog to sniff out a new toy.
Schedule your annual visit to the veterinarian. You'll gain extra peace of mind, knowing you are looking after your pet's health.
Bake some homemade dog treats. The aroma will make your dog even happier!
Get some training. Whether you start a new training program with a professional dog behavioral therapist or want to focus on dog obedience, vow to take time with your dog so he (and you) can continually learn how your dog can be a good canine citizen.
Learn some new tricks. There are many activities you can try with your dog, depending on his (and your!) temperament and physical ability. Some popular dog sports are dog agility, Flyball, flying disc, skijoring, and rally obedience. Also good fun is a rousing game of fetch in the backyard!
Whether on Valentine's Day or any day of the year, the best thing you can do with your dog to show your love is to simply spend lots of time with him. He'll return your love tenfold.