New Year’s resolutions for you and your pet

And they have nothing to do with losing weight!

A woman reads a book with a cat in her lap

For many, New Year’s resolutions are an opportunity to create positive life changes, though others may see them as promises made to be broken. Whatever camp you fall in, it’s good to have goals ― and also good to be gentle on yourself when you don’t meet them.

Whether you have major aspirations for 2024, or you’re simply proud of yourself for getting through another year, cheers to you and your love of animals!

Check out these six unique commitments ― that have nothing to do with weight loss ― you can make to ensure you and your furry friend have an amazing 2024 and beyond!

Get crafty

Grey dog playing with an orange and blue snuffle matt

Let’s face it, many of our New Year’s resolutions come to a halt when we realize the depths of winter aren’t exactly the most pleasant time to start … well anything. But starting a new craft project is a fun exception!

AHS has compiled delightful DIY projects for animal lovers of all ages. The best part? Your creativity can benefit your pet!

Create a mentally stimulating snuffle mat for your dog or design new cat toys that will keep your kitty busy. Or build a feral shelter (it’s easier than you think!) so the fruits of your labor can help homeless animals in your community.

Read more

Whether you’re snuggled up in bed with your cat on your lap on a cold winter’s night or lounging in the sun with your pup by your side, reading is a great way for you and your pet to enjoy each other’s company.

Plus there’s no shortage of books that will appeal to your inner animal lover. In fact, AHS staff have hand-picked their favorite animal-related content taking all the guesswork out of your next read.

Black and brown dog sitting for a treat at AHS training class

Learn a new skill

Think training classes only teach your pet new skills? Think again. Training is as much for pet parents as it is for our four-legged friends.

AHS offers family-friendly training classes at three locations that can help bring out the best in you and your pet.

Already have obedience mastered? Check out one of our specialty classes like Brain Games or The Nose Knows and keep the learning going!

Practice better sleep hygiene

A better New Year starts with a better night’s sleep. Creating a solid night-time routine is a great place to start — so why not make your best friend part of it?

Spend time winding down each evening with your pet practicing healthy behaviors for both of you like grooming, taking your vitamins or supplements, or settling in with a good book (see above).

Wondering if your cat or dog should follow you to bed? There’s actual science behind the benefits of sleeping with your pets!

Reduce your carbon paw print

The products you use to care for your pet can make a huge impact on the environment. Choosing a more sustainably sourced food, rethinking how you eliminate pet waste, and evaluating the toxicity of your pet's toys or grooming products are all great ways to start living a more eco-friendly life with your furry friend.

Of course, there’s one resolution that never goes out style: helping animals in need. Remember you can be a hero for dogs, cats, and critters waiting for homes by making a donation of any amount or including AHS in your estate plans.

Declutter your space

The new year is the perfect time to refresh your home, whether that means finally painting that room you've been putting off, giving your house a deep clean, or decluttering to make space for new things in the coming year. As you sift through items in your house, consider donating new or gently used pet supplies to Animal Humane Society! 

Items like clean bath towels, leashes, KONGS, and cat litter are always needed in our shelters, and we're happy to accept all new and gently used donations! You can drop off donated items at the entrance of our Coon Rapids, Golden Valley, and Woodbury adoption centers during regular business hours. 

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