Whether you have a partner or not, we understand that whilst Valentines is really just a commercial opportunity for retailers to empty more from our pockets, it is actually a perfectly plausible excuse (if you needed one!) to heap more love and affection on your pampered pooch!
Here are out top 5 suggestions to show your love and adoration to your fur baby this Valentines Day 2022.
1 The way to a dog's heart
If their favourite titbit from the table is a morsel of chicken or turkey, spoil them rotten with a real treat of their favourite lean meat as well as their usual favourite dog food brand.
2 New routes to their heart
Most of us enjoy our walks in the fresh air and meeting fellow dog parents but when was the last time you took your pooch on a brand new route. Mix it all up with a new path, new forest, new route from A to B offering brand new smells, sights and scenery.
3 Wet Wet Wet
You may be bound by your local environment and not able to offer this, but have you thought how much great exercise and fun a wild swim would be for your four legged friend. What a treat to bounce in the water, get a wet and messy as they like and only be met with a hug and warm towel! (please ensure you observe all safety procedures first)
4 Furry Friends
There's nothing like a good sniff, game of chase and catch me if you can with other friendly pups you often see on your walks. Arranging a special meet up on Feb 14th will give them a sweet opportunity to play and wag tails with furry friends, and you too can enjoy a good chinwag!
5 Deli Belly
No not and upset stomach but there are more and more fresh deli treats for dogs on the market so choosing a really special doggy treat will be the best Valentine's Day present for your pooch. Look out for rabbit ears, calf hooves or what about a fancy 'woofin' cake from Barking Bakery!
With any, or all, of these super treats you'll be sure to receive extra cuddles, snuggles and lickies from your four legged Valentine!
1. 'View handling and socialisation as an 'education' for your dog and don't assume this will be a seamless and immediate process. Start off a little at a time, allowing your dog to feel comfortable whenever you introduce them to someone new or an unfamiliar environment.'
2. 'Try to 'vet' the dogs and people you introduce your dog to, as these meetings can impact their long-term confidence. If in doubt, opt out!'
3. 'Think of socialisation as a series of life lessons and have a clear plan for your dog's training. For example, today they are meeting a small dog, next week they're meeting a man, and so on. View each 'life lesson' as a separate entity, as this will allow you to monitor and access your dog's confidence each time, instead of overwhelming them.'
4. 'Position meetings with other dogs and/or people as rewards; by giving them treats as positive reinforcements, for example. This will help your dog form positive associations with new dogs and people. Overall, they will become more relaxed and social, instead of showing signs of anxiety.
5. 'Use these meetings to practice core skills such as recall, impulse control, and working against distractions. When your dog does meet other dogs and people, you will then have more control.'
6. 'Teach your dog a word or 'cue' which signifies when it's appropriate to approach a stranger.'
7. 'Not all dogs, and people, like dogs! So, work on teaching your dog to ignore people when necessary, too. Socialisation is great, but be mindful that your dog's approach won't always be welcome.'
8. 'If you have a small dog, consider that people approach from above. Ask them to kneel down instead, to make their introduction less intimidating.'
9. 'Teach your dog to sit upon hearing the word 'hello', so that they automatically sit when you greet someone.'
10. 'Photograph or video your training sessions! This will allow you to look back on your dog's behaviour and determine whether or not they were at ease, making positive adjustments moving forward.'