Here’s Why Your Dog is the Perfect Hobby Companion ~ click here to comment March 19, 2018 00:00

Guest post by Maria Cannon

Happy #TCJMonday Everyone! 

TCJ intro: If you follow me & TCJ, you will already know, I am obsessed with cats…Kitty & Percy (my two main furry friends) make it into FB & IG posts regularly! I know all about the love you can receive and give to pets, and they make great backdrops to photos!  That being said, there is a huge responsibility that goes with being a pet owner.  Please consider your lifestyle and if you can give the proper time and dedication and can afford the expenses before introducing any pet into your life!

Please welcome back Maria as she outlines the fabulous ways dogs can enhance your crafty life.

Here’s Why Your Dog is the Perfect Hobby Companion

 You’ve probably heard that hobbies are good for your health: they give you something to occupy your mind, keep your brain active, and can even keep your physical health in-check. If you’re a dog owner, or thinking about adopting a four-legged friend, you can maximize the health benefits of hobbies by incorporating your pup into your favorite pastimes. Not sure how Fido fits into your plans? Read on to find out how you can incorporate your dog into just about any activity.

Dogs Love Active Outdoor Fun, Too

Of course, the most obvious way to engage in hobbies with your dog is to participate in outdoor activities. Dogs love to play fetch, making them a great companion for frisbee lovers. Unlike your human friends and maybe your significant other, a dog is always up for a walk or jog around the block or a hike through the woods.

If your pup loves the beach just as much as you do, plan a day trip packed with fun and games of fetch. When you’re both tuckered out at the end of an active day, snuggling up next to your furry friend for a nap is the perfect way to end the day. The great thing about outdoor activities is that they provide ample opportunities for physical activity, which is good for your physical health – and your dog’s, too.

Crafting…with Dogs?

A dog is the ideal sidekick for more than just long walks and a game of fetch at the dog park; your dog can accompany you on the trails, rest his head in your lap while you watch a sappy movie on a Friday night, and even play a role in your favorite crafts. If you love to sew, for example, why not make some handmade duds for your handsome pup?

Up-cycle some old, no-longer used items to craft a sophisticated dog bed or use your baking skills to prepare some delectable handmade treats for your four-legged friend. You can put your crafty skills to work with dozens of DIY ideas that your pup is sure to enjoy.

Photographers, Artists, and Dogs, Unite

Whether you’re an amateur or a pro, pets tend to make photogenic subjects. Practice your photography skills in a fun outdoor photo session, or try your hand at some William Wegman-style photography just for fun.

If manning the camera isn’t your thing, but you have a way with a paintbrush and canvas, painting (or drawing) your pet’s portrait is the perfect way to spend some quality time with your beloved pet while creating a lasting memory that you’ll cherish forever.

Do Some Volunteering

Did you know that it’s relatively easy to have your dog certified as a therapy dog? A therapy dog is different from a service dog. Service dogs are specially trained from a young age to work with people with specific disabilities, such as vision impairment or epilepsy. Therapy dogs, on the other hand, work alongside their owners visiting settings such as schools, assisted living communities and nursing homes, and hospitals.

Therapy dogs improve the well-being of the children and adults they visit, providing emotional support to the elderly, a cheerful distraction for children and adults who are hospitalized, and simply by being a friendly, fuzzy face. If you like to give back to the community, find out if your dog is a good candidate for a therapy dog certification and start making a difference in the lives of others.

Fido Deserves a Break

If you haven’t ever taken your dog on vacation, consider bringing him along on your next adventure. Whether you take a long weekend trip to the beach or head into the woods for a week-long camping excursion, your dog can make a perfect travel companion – he’s never grumpy, he tends to pack light, and he won’t get irritable when you’re stuck in traffic (although he may request a potty break).

If you do plan to travel with your dog, make sure that your travel arrangements are suitable for your dog. There are many pet-friendly hotels and other lodging options, and some airlines are pet-friendly, as well (although air travel can be a bit trickier compared to land travel for pets). Nothing makes a strange bed more comfortable than having your dog snuggled up by your side.

There are many activities, pastimes, and adventures that are sure to be just as enjoyable for your dog as they are for you. Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway, thinking about planning a hike on your favorite trail, or looking for some new ideas to satisfy your crafty urges, your dog can fit perfectly into your lifestyle. Plus, bringing your dog along for the ride means you get twice the benefit: the emotional well-being benefits that your dog’s companionship provides, plus the many mental and physical health benefits you already gain from engaging in a hobby you love. 

Cha-ching

Ever considered an easy side gig that would give you and your beloved dog some fresh air and exercise plus some extra cash? Just think: more budget for yarn! Needles! Hooks! It may not be as hard as you think to get started as a dog walker (and/or dog boarder) through sites like Rover.com. If you decide to go this route, you’ll have extra tail wags and kisses on your next outdoor adventure with your pup.

A dog is more than (wo)man’s best friend: a dog can be just the friend you need to get more exercise, explore new territories, learn new crafts, or even make a little extra money. Give your furry friend an extra pat today to let him know how much you care!

Image via Pixabay by 3025332

About Maria: Quilting is my favorite pastime, but it's much more than that, too. As someone who has dealt with depression and anxiety, I've also found that having a hobby, like quilting, can be the perfect prescription for boosting mental health, not to mention that it challenges the brain.

In general, no matter how old you are, hobbies can reduce stress, improve mood, offer feelings of accomplishment, and provide opportunities for socializing. Unfortunately, not everyone realizes the benefits of hobbies, so I have started looking for more resources and information to share with people of all ages. I created Hobby Jr as an outlet to share my found information including useful links, resources and articles about how to get started.