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Word of the Week

Clowder (k-loud-er): A group of cats. It comes from the Middle English word clodder meaning "a clotted mass." Hmmm. . .this one still doesn't quite make sense to me, but "a clowder of cats" is pretty fun to say!


Hello my dear friends!


Sunday, April 11th is National Pet Day! It was founded in 2006 to celebrate the joy that pets bring to our lives. I know there are tons of you out there who have pets and love them beyond measure. In the blink of an eye, they become our best friends, our companions. My Mac and Cheese are always excited to see me walk through my door, and it feels good!


Pets benefit our lives in sooo many ways.

  • They improve your mood

  • They can help lower your blood pressure

  • They increase your socialization with others (family members, neighbors, etc.)

  • They can help limit your stress

  • They help keep you feeling safe (especially dogs)

  • They make you more physically active

  • Kids feel comfortable practicing their reading in front of pets, so you could say pets make them better readers

  • They help teach kids responsibility

So, why not spoil them a little bit to celebrate this holiday! How? There are a million ways that come to mind. Here are a few I came up with for two pets near and dear to my heart.


Dogs:

  • Take them for a long walk or throw the ball around (even if you're tired)

  • Play a new game! Grab some treats and a few empty boxes or plastic cups. Hide the treats under one cup, shuffle them around, and let your dog use his trained nose to find the treat. When he finds it, reward him with some praise (and the treat, of course!)

  • Create an obstacle course using things around your house. Your dog will love the attention and crawling through/around different items (or jumping over them.)

  • Play a game of hide and seek with your pup. Instruct him to sit and stay. Then, you hide! When you're in the perfect spot, call his name and wait for him to greet you with kisses.

  • Make some homemade dog treats!

Cats:

  • Treat your cat to a new scratching post. You can train her to use it by giving her a treat each time she uses it.

  • Create the purrfect new place for your cat to lounge and sunbathe on.

  • Play a chasing game. Let your cat "hunt" a piece of string, a laser, etc.

Dogs and Cats:

  • Buy them a new toy or treats

  • Teach them a new trick- they'll love the extra attention

  • Adopt a pet from your local animal shelter

  • Donate money or supplies to your local animal shelter

  • Volunteer at your local animal shelter- the animals need love and attention there, too!

AND now for my favorite suggestion. . .


Throw a pet photoshoot. Get creative and have fun! Then share your winning photos with the hashtag #NationalPetDay! Best part? You can do this with just about any kind of pet you may have. Show me your hamster, goldfish, pony, bird, donkey, goat, or whatever else you might have. Yes, I'll even look at a picture of your snake (gasp). I want to see your creativity, so be sure to share your pictures on social media or e-mail them to LJMadwish@gmail.com.



It's our turn to be extra sweet to our little companions. Have fun, take pictures, and show them how much you love them.


Gram




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