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How A Pet Can Help Your Overall Wellness Goals for 2023

written by Ellie Walker

When you set goals for yourself, it can be helpful to have someone hold you accountable. The good news for pet parents is that our four-legged friends can be that perfect someone, especially when it comes to wellness goals. Let’s take a look at how pets can improve your wellness and help you achieve your goals for 2023.

Wellness goal #1: Get into a regular fitness routine

If one of your goals for 2023 is to get into a regular fitness routine, you’ll be happy to know that this is one of the best examples of how pets can improve your wellness. Being a dog parent means that you have to take them out two to three times a day, for a minimum of 15 to 20 minutes per walk. Having your pup keep you accountable ensures that even if the weather is inclement or you simply don’t feel like getting your steps in, you have to. Of course, there are also the health benefits that come with regular exercise, such as

  • Improved cardiovascular fitness

  • Lower blood pressure

  • Stronger muscles and bones

But you’re not the only one that will benefit from a regular exercise program – your pet does as well! Dogs who exercise regularly benefit from:

  • Lower blood pressure

  • Stronger muscles and bones

  • Decreased stressed

  • Less destructive behaviors

Wellness goal #2: Reduce stress

A second way that pets can improve your wellness is through their natural ability to reduce stress. Extensive studies have been conducted to see the impact of pets on stress and the research shows that social interaction between people and their dogs causes an increase in oxytocin. Furthermore, after just three months of being pet parents, there was a significant decrease in blood pressure and reactivity to stress.

Wellness goal #3: Make new friends

Physical wellness isn’t the only type of wellness goal to consider – mental wellness is just as important. The social connections you have in your life can play a big role in your overall happiness and your dog can help with this. If one of your goals for 2023 is to make new friends, the dog park is a great place to start:

  • Try visiting the park at the same time every day, as you’ll start to see some familiar faces.

  • If you’re nervous about speaking to new people, let your dogs initiate the interaction – it’s easier to start talking to the pet parent of the dog your pup is already playing with.

If your dog isn’t a fan of the park, you could also try enrolling in agility or training classes that would give you a chance to see the same faces week after week.

Wellness goal #4: Reduce your impact on the environment

You likely won’t be surprised to know that the environment can play a big role in your overall wellness. If you live in an area with environmental pollutants, you are at an increased risk of developing health issues such as:

  • Respiratory diseases

  • Heart disease

  • Some types of cancer

Knowing this, reducing the impact you personally have on the environment can help your overall well-being. What many pet parents don’t realize, however, is this is another way how your pet can help improve your wellness.

By making the switch to Freshpet, you’re choosing food with packaging that is engineered to keep each recipe food-safe and nutritious while using as little material as possible.

  • Freshpet: 2-10g of packaging per 30lb dog

  • Average wet food competitor: 80-120g of packaging per 30lb dog

As you can see, we use about 20 times less packaging than the average wet food competitor. Learn more about other ways switching to Freshpet can reduce your impact on the environment.

Wellness goal #5: Get involved in your local community

Getting involved in your local community is another great example of how pets improve wellness. Looking for opportunities to volunteer with your pet at organizations in your community will not only benefit others but will also have a big impact on your own wellness. People that regularly volunteer experience:

  • Reduced stress

  • Decreased feelings of isolation and loneliness

  • Increased confidence

  • Increased sense of purpose and meaning

Some ways that you can get involved in your community with your pet include:

  • Training to become Canine Good Citizen, which is often required to volunteer in places like hospitals and nursing homes

  • Raise money for your local shelter or rescue and participate in any charity events they may have – most of which will be pet-friendly!

  • Sign your pup up as a canine blood donor to save the lives of other dogs

From our Freshpet family to yours, we wish you a happy new year and hope that you’ve been inspired to find a wellness goal for 2023 that you and your pet can work towards together!

A person holding a black and white dog reaching for a Freshpet recipe.

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