Veterinarian-written / veterinarian-approved articles for your dog.

4 Easy Ways to Improve Your Dog's Quality of Life

Use these four tips to improve your dog’s life.

Everyone's interested in increasing their dog's life span, and it's crucial to know ways to do that when you share a home with dogs (Check out "7 Easy Ways to Keep Your Dog Healthy.")

It's also important to consider your dog's quality of life. Here are four simple ways to improve and maintain that quality.

Provide Physical and Mental Exercise

Of course, exercise improves your dog's physical health by helping to maintain a reasonable body weight. It's also a way for dogs to let out stress and remain mentally healthy. But regular exercise for the body and brain also helps improve your dog's quality of life.

Exercise is fun for dogs. Running, fetching, swimming, doing an agility or obstacle course, and working on a puzzle toy are all things that spark your dog's "fun bone" and improve his quality of life. So, as much as it might be tempting to skip out on the evening play session with your dog, try not to. And remember, it's not just exciting for your pup—it's fun for you too.

One part of physical activity that you should be sure you're letting your dog engage in daily is sniffing during walks. Dogs gain a lot of information when they sniff, and constantly pulling them along without allowing them to stop and smell things can decrease their happiness. Learn some of what dogs learn when they sniff: "You Have Email; Your Dog Has P-Mail."

Don't Skip the Dog Training

Consistent training sessions are great for a dog's quality of life. There are a few reasons for that. One is that it's another form of fun and bonding with you for your dog. Training means focused, one-on-one time with an owner, and your dog loves that. It makes him feel like a genuine part of the pack, and that drastically increases his quality of life.

The better trained your dog is, the more things you can do together too, so, over time, training has the effect of adding fun for an entire life span.

Be on the Lookout for Pain

Nothing decreases quality of life like pain, and dogs can suffer from different hidden types of pain for a while before it becomes apparent. So, you should know the signs of pain in dogs and be ready to get to the vet and develop a treatment plan to relieve it as quickly as possible.

Some signs of pain in dogs include:

  • Limping
  • Coughing
  • Lethargy
  • Disinterest
  • Pawing at the mouth
  • Licking or chewing at one spot on the body

Be Consistent

When you aren't consistent with the rules you enforce for your dog, it can cause anxiety, and that severely decreases a dog's quality of life. There are a couple of areas in which consistency will really benefit your dog.

One such area is household rules. If your dog isn't allowed to have people food, don't do it sometimes and not others, for example. If your dog isn't allowed in a particular room, don't make an exception once in a while. Such inconsistency can create an atmosphere where your dog doesn't know whether he's doing something wrong, and that will make him anxious.

A second area where consistency on your part can improve your dog's quality of life is with a daily routine. It helps dogs feel secure and decreases anxiety when they know what to expect and when each thing is coming. Having and sticking to a routine for feeding, walking, and playing can help improve your dog's quality of life, especially when you are sure to keep the physical and mental activity in the schedule.

You May Also Like These Articles:

7 Easy Ways to Keep Your Dog Healthy

5 Often-Overlooked Dog Care Areas

Going Camping with Your Dog

How to Help a Dog with Anxiety

What You Need to Know in Case of a Canine Emergency

Disclaimer: This website is not intended to replace professional consultation, diagnosis, or treatment by a licensed veterinarian. If you require any veterinary related advice, contact your veterinarian promptly. Information at is exclusively of a general reference nature. Do not disregard veterinary advice or delay treatment as a result of accessing information at this site. Just Answer is an external service not affiliated with

Notice: Ask-a-Vet is an affiliated service for those who wish to speak with a veterinary professional about their pet's specific condition. Initially, a bot will ask questions to determine the general nature of your concern. Then, you will be transferred to a human. There is a charge for the service if you choose to connect to a veterinarian. Ask-a-Vet is not manned by the staff or owners of, and the advice given should not delay or replace a visit to your veterinarian.