Dog goals make life with your dog even better. I know you’re thinking dog goals? What does that mean? My dog doesn’t have any goals besides eating, going for a walk, and getting his belly rubbed. Well, this is about you. What are your goals for you and your dog? Did you set any before you got your dog? Have you re-evaluated them?
If not, it’s ok. You can still set your goals now and create your plan now. If you did set your goals at the beginning, it may be time to re-evaluate them.
The reason you want to know what your goals are for your dog is that you want to always be focused. Especially, when your dog digs that hole in the middle of your freshly planted flower bed or has an accident on your favorite rug. You need to remind yourself of the reason you have your dog.
Let me explain dog goals
Some people get a dog on impulse. They see those big brown eyes staring at them and they’re hooked. That’s not the way I encourage people to find their dog. But if that’s the way you did that’s ok as long as everyone is happy. You can even set a goal for yourself and your dog now.
I’m talking about answering the simple question “Why do I want to get a dog?” Or if you already have your dog, “Why do I have my dog?”
The answer can vary widely. And the answer can often shift over time. For example, if you got your dog to help your kids learn responsibility, but now they are away at college, you may want to reassess the goals for you and your dog.
A few common goals or reasons for getting a dog can be:
This is always a good one. Who doesn’t like to walk in the door and be greeted by a warm, happy, cuddly little pup that doesn’t care if the boss thought everything you did today was wrong. Or that you had to walk five blocks to get to your office building because you forgot and left your building parking pass in your other purse.
Yep, your dog simply loves you. Even when he digs up your tulips you carefully planted and you scold him. He still loves you. That’s the beauty of a dog. No matter what muck you’ve been through or brought home, he’s just going to love you. Having a dog for companionship can be a wonderful dog goal and you will find many ways to bond with your dog.
2. Personal Protection
Sometimes people get a dog for personal protection. This type of dog is generally highly trained and can be very expensive if purchased pre-trained. However, the peace of mind this type of dog can provide a person or family may very well be worth the price. It’s also possible to rescue a dog and train it to become a personal protection dog. Either way, if your dog goal is to have a dog for personal protection, I encourage you to seek out a well-certified trainer in personal protection.
3. Responsibility For Kids
As mentioned, earlier, dogs are a great way to teach children about responsibility. They can learn about taking care of another animal who is dependent on them. However, I always recommend that mom or dad supervise and make sure that the dog is well cared for. While the dog is a nice way to teach this lesson, it’s still a living being and not a science experiment.
A great way to help improve your health is by getting a dog. Some people just need a bit of encouragement to get moving and a dog is a great way to do it. What better way to go for a walk or run than with your dog?
Besides, petting a dog has been medically proven to lower your blood pressure. I know, personally, if I’m feeling down and spend a few minutes playing with my dog, I will generally feel better. That’s a release of the “feel-good” hormone oxytocin.
3. Running (or training) Partner
It’s always easier to exercise and train for competitions (if you’re an athlete) with a partner. However, some early morning or late night hours often make it difficult to do so with another person.
A dog can be a perfect partner for some people in these situations. Of course, it’s always important to keep in your dog’s well-being too. I like to use a cooling vest during the warmer months. It keeps my dog cool for hours, especially if I soak it in ice water for 30-60 minutes before putting it on him.
6. Animal Companion
It can be a nice thought to get a dog as a companion for another fur animal you already have in your family. I have done this many times. As long as everyone gets along well, it’s generally not a bad idea. Senior animals seem to get a bit more energy from younger ones. Besides, it gives the senior animals a whole new purpose. He has to teach the new fur kid the ropes.
Some people will seek out a dog specifically for showing it. While I don’t know much about the dog show world, I have enjoyed watching various shows. I even had a cat who absolutely loved watching the big dogs each year on a stroll across the TV at The Westminster Dog Show each year. I have learned that there is a lot that goes into showing a dog and finding the right type of dog to show.
8. Giving Back
Another goal some people will have when they decide to get a dog is to give back. They will train it to help others. This could be a seeing-eye dog or a therapy dog.
While this is a great goal, it’s also a big journey with a lot of work involved. When I got my dog, my goal was to train him to be a therapy dog for kids. He’s a very special pup. We have many tools we use we’re in a training mood.
Knowing your dog goals will prevent you from getting side-tracked. For instance, if you get a dog and want to do agility training, but discover that the classes are or equipment are more than you expected, then start a dog agility account. The idea is to stay focused on your purpose. But also be willing to change course, if you need to at any point. Like you discover you rather learn how to teach your dog tricks instead or whatever the case is for you. It doesn’t have to break the budget if you are focused and plan.
Summary of Dog Goals
There are many goals or reasons people may have for getting a dog. These reasons may change over time. A few reasons for getting a dog can include companionship, protection, running/training partner, health, responsibility for kids, companion for another animal, showing, and giving back.
While I covered many goals or reasons for getting a dog or puppy, these certainly are not all of them.