Skip to Content

Report on the Year’s Resolutions for My Dog

This is my last post of 2017.

At the start of this year, I shared some of the goals I had for Baxter and myself, and I thought today was a good time to look back and see how we did.

How we did on our 2017 goals

1. Take a dog training class

We’ve recently been working on a few things with Baxter with our trainer. While we’re not in an official class, it’s been great to have that professional perspective.

Our trainer has lots of experience and she also brings a different point of view to Baxter’s behaviour. I’m excited to share more about what we’re learning in the new year.

2. Better dental care

This one has continued to be hit and miss for us. We had success moving our brushings to morning rather than evening, but I confess I still don’t remember to do them every day.

One technique that helped was putting a daily checklist in my agenda. That way, every morning when I sat down to work, I had a reminder that I was supposed to brush his teeth.

Plus, the simple act of checking off each box gave me a sense of accomplishment.

See my post: How to make brushing your dog’s teeth a habit.

3. Go back to basics

My goal in focusing on basic obedience was to be more confident when off-leash hiking with Baxter.

I feel like we have come to an understanding when it comes to hiking. He’s never going to be the dog that sticks right by me, and I know when I shouldn’t push his limits.

We spent some time over the last year on recall and some time leash dragging.

We’ve also hiked more just the two of us, which I feel has really strengthened our bond and helped him tune in to me, rather than the rest of the pack.

Overall, 2017 has been a great year for Baxter and me.

We’ve spent a lot of time together (especially since I started working from home), and we’ve had a lot of new experiences.

2018 will bring more new things, and I’m looking forward to continuing to work with him, have fun together and share it all with you.

Happy holidays to you and your canine companions. Bax and I will be back in the new year with more adventures.


Did you have any goals with your dog this year?

Did you have any new experiences together? What was the most memorable part of the past year with your dog for you?

Julia Thomson is a blogger at Home on 129 Acres where she writes about her adventures of country living and DIY renovating. She and her husband live on a 129-acre farm in Ontario, Canada.

Related posts:

10 hurdles preventing you from training your dog

Training our 10-week-old puppy – our goals this week

Barbara Rivers

Tuesday 19th of December 2017

Happy Holidays to you and your loved ones too, Julia! Thanks for the reminder to practice obedience basics. While I do incorporate sits, downs, and stays on a daily basis, I haven't been practicing our recall in quite some time. That one definitely needs improving.

Julia at Home on 129 Acres

Tuesday 19th of December 2017

Basic obedience is a foundation for so many other skills. It's great that you already do so much every day. And it's also important to be realistic about what you and your dogs need to work on. Enjoy your holidays!

Lindsay Stordahl

Monday 18th of December 2017

Your post has inspired me to set some goals for Remy. There are always things I want to work on with him training-wise, but I rarely commit to an actual plan. There are too many things to list out but I'll be choosing a few at a time to work on such as coming when called and dropping high-value items. And I'd like to sign up for an agility class.

Julia at Home on 129 Acres

Tuesday 19th of December 2017

I've found it helpful to at least write down what I want to work on. I may not make a full-fledged plan, but jotting it down, even just on a sticky note for myself, somehow makes it more official.

I'd be interested to hear about your experience with agility. I feel like it could be a good way to burn off some excess energy and work on focus. Is he coordinated? I feel like with his long legs he'd either be really good or really bad! (No offense, Remy. I wish I had long legs).