Hello ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the PET | TAO Holistic Pet Products Podcast.
I’m Dr. Marc Smith, your host, 20 year practicing veterinarian and also one of two co-creators of PET | TAO Holistic Pet Products.
Welcome to Episode 4, and today what I’m going to talk to you about are three keys to becoming a better pet parent. It’s something we all need; it’s something I’m asked every day in practice.
“Dr. Smith, how can I become a better pet owner, a better pet parent for my life and also for my pet’s life?”
And so, I’m going to go over three key things that you can do each and every day to help you in that process.
The first thing is – you’ve got to provide structure. So, number one is structure.
Provide your pet with structure.
Everything does better, including your pet, especially a dog, with structure.
And when I talk about structure, what I’m talking about is feeding your pet at the same time every day, following the exact same system – whatever system you develop of feeding your dog, putting your dog to bed, walking your dog.
The expectations that your dog should have should be very structured.
And, a lot of people confuse this with training. Training is a little different than structure.
Training is typically a professional endeavor that of course you can learn as a homeowner or as a pet parent.
But the main thing is the structure – doing the same thing each and every day, time and time again, so that your pet feels secure and feels comfortable.
We see pets all the time that when the parents go out of town, the owners board their pet.
Well, that messes up the dog’s structure, and when you mess up the structure, you have problems.
So, the number one key is to provide structure each and every day.
The number two key is to spend time with your animal.
I kind of like the quote by Jim Rome: “Time is our most valuable asset. Yet, we tend to waste it, kill it and spend it rather than invest it.”
You need to invest time in your pet to have a good pet and have a reciprocal relationship that is rewarding to both yourself and to your pet.
The way to do that is to spend time, whether it’s sitting on the couch petting your dog, or taking your dog to the park and throwing or playing fetch, or taking your dog on a nice walk.
Spend time with your pet.
That’s the number two key to becoming a better pet parent.
And the third key is a little bit out of the box.
But the third key is you got to be open-minded.
Cause what’s going to happen is, is you go on this journey of being a pet parent and developing this relationship with your dog.
And things are going to change.
Your situation is going to change.
The dog’s situation is going to change.
“What happens if my dog gets sick? How am I going to handle it?”
“What if my dog runs away? How am I going to handle it?”
“What happens if my dog unfortunately bites someone? How am I going to handle it?”
The key here is you have to be open-minded.
Open-minded to all the different things you might face as a pet owner.
It’s tough. It can be difficult.
And the funny thing I see in practice each and every day is people get a pet, and they have a lifelong relationship with this animal, and I hear it all the time:
“I’m not getting another one.”
“If something happens I’m not getting another one.”
And I think the reason people say that is because they become so attached to these pets knowing something may happen to them.
They’re fearful of the pain from that loss that they may endure, the pain from that failed or ending relationship that they may have to deal with.
This can be very troublesome, and it can be extremely difficult.
So during that process, you need to be open-minded, and being open-minded also means developing and learning your own philosophy – your own philosophy about how you take care of your pet, about how you build a relationship with your pet, and about how you view your pet in your world.
So, to sum it up, the three keys to becoming a better pet parent are provide structure, are to spend time with your pet, and number three, be open minded about all the different possibilities that you may face as you travel on this journey and this relationship with your pet.
Thank you for listening, and if you liked what we talked about today then give us a rating on iTunes.
If you didn’t like what we talked about today then send us an e-mail and tell us how we can improve, or if you have any questions, or you have any topics that you want me to discuss in the future, then please email us.
If you want to help build your philosophy about how you want to take care of your pet in the future, then you can download our free e-book on Eastern Food Therapy at www.pettao.com.
Have a good day.