New Year’s Resolution?

As the New Year rolls around, we all tend to reflect on the year that has been and where we would like to be in 2017.

For many of us, this includes some exercise or weight loss goals to trim up in the New Year. This is great, and something that is also important for many of our pets.

Over 50% of dogs and cats we see through the clinic are overweight. This increases their risk of arthritis and other diseases like diabetes, Cushings and heart disease. So…. Why not include your pet in your new year’s resolution?

Some helpful hints to get you and your dog out walking:

  • Set the alarm a bit early or wait until late evening to go for a walk when it is cooler and more enjoyable for you and your pet
  • Shorter, more regular walks are easier for you and your pet as you get started
  • Try to do something every day, even if it is only 10 minutes
  • Make a point of going for a walk somewhere different; this provides your pet with some exciting stimulation and you with a chance to explore and appreciate more of our beautiful Barossa. Here are a few suggestions:
  • Linear Park in Nuriootpa behind the Caravan park is a lovely place for a walk
  • Peter Lehmann Winery in Tanunda allows you to walk your dog along the edge of the vines
  • Heinemann Park in Tanunda is fenced and allows your dog to run free as you get some exercise

For cats, playing with toys and encouraging them to climb, with towers in the house are the best options, not quite so good for you, but will certainly still make them happy.

An added bonus to exercise is that it allows you to interact with your dog and enrich their lives. A recent program on Catalyst discovered that the more you directly interact with your pet through walks, training, brushing and other activities, the happier they are. So the great news is that by working on your health and fitness; you can not only help your pet to lose weight, but make them happier as well.

If you have any questions, you can email Catherine at or visit our website for more details.


Looking for more advice for your favourite pet? Check out the following articles by Catherine.

Catherine Harper of Barossa & Kapunda Veterinary Clinic