It is great to be a pet owner in northern Nevada. We have good weather and a huge backyard playground around us. Play together; stay together, experts say! Our animals help us relax and restore our psychological health.
Here are 12 pet-perfect things you can start doing with your furry companions in 2012.
Fido ‘N Me Fitness Classes — This is perfect for people and dogs who already exercise and are looking for some new ideas, as well as for those who need some help establishing an exercise routine. You and your dog will learn something, have fun and make new friends. Contact K9WellnessCenter.com.
Purrfect time with your kitty — Since 1984, The Silver Cats Club has been a group dedicated to everything cat. Participate in local rated cat shows and household cat shows, or get involved in a team of volunteers at local animal-aid agencies. For more information, visit www.silvercatsreno.org.
Horseplay and good health — Try your hand at horse competition in the most friendly local show groups, English and Western. For more information, visit SNHSA.org or WNHA.info.
Ferret frolics — Pack up your pack and watch them play! Even ferrets need time to stretch and scamper about. Make new friends at Reno’s most active ferret playgroup and rescue organization. For more information, visit FreeWebs.com/FallonFerts.
Skijoring is for privileged dogs — Skijoring is a cross between dog sledding and cross country skiing. A dog pulls a skier who, depending on the terrain, either skis along or brakes. For more information, visit www.tahoexc.org/general/dog_friendly_trails.html.
Rally-O means “obedience” — Want your dog to be super at something? Try this sport that is mental exercise and a challenge of teamwork. Contact DogTrainingbyPJ.com.
Dock jumping with your dog — This activity will build strong camaraderie and rapport between dog and owner, plus it is so fun to watch. For more information, visit CanYourDogFly.com.
Horses for the spirit — You and your horse can participate in programs that help Washoe County youth learn positive life and social skills. Plus you’ll practice natural horsemanship among friends. Founded in 2005, Horses for the Spirit has helped children at locations that include the Kids Kottage, McGee Center, Social Services, the Children’s Cabinet and many more. For more information, visit HorsesForTheSpirit.org.
Pet therapy — If your pet loves attention, this is the new pastime for you both. Animal-assisted therapy is common at many local retirement homes and hospitals. You and your pet can be trained, or might already qualify, to help others. For more information, visit Paws-For-Love.org.
Flyball is a new twist on fetch — Dogs jump four hurdles and step on a spring-loaded box that shoots out a tennis ball. The dog catches the tennis ball and then runs back over the hurdles. When the dog crosses the starting line, the next dog goes. The first team to have all four dogs run without errors wins the heat. Ready, set, go! For more information, visit RevolutionDogSports.com.
Agility for dogs that just wanna have fun — Here the “dog walk” is just one of the cool pieces of equipment that your dog learns to negotiate. With a sense of adventure and competition, this is a fast-paced sport for human and canine. For more information, visit MDT-Agilityability.com.
Meditate together — Mimic your pet while he or she is in a quiet, relaxed state. Notice your animal’s actions, expressions, breathing and attention. You might begin to feel the same sort of spiritual connection that most animals feel all the time.
Read more articles like this in PetFolio Magazine, “A World Unleashed,” at PetFolioMagazine.com.