How To Add Activity To Your Pet’s Lifestyle

Dream Green DIY worked with the NexGard® (afoxolaner) team to create the following post for

It hasn’t been a fast process and every day that went by without any luck was pretty disheartening to my sister and, frankly, to our entire family, too. Her lease required that this hypothetical new pup weigh under a certain small amount, but she had her heart set on a big black lab. She met all sorts of potential pups, but none of them worked out for one reason or another (ex. weight limitations, incompatibility with other dogs, incompatibility with cats, etc.). That is, until Rory came along.


This pint-sized, docked tail mixed black lab puppy came to us very unexpectedly from the local SPCA here in Waynesboro, Virginia, and turned out to be the answer my sister had been looking for all this time. He’s on the smaller side, but very clearly made of Labrador retriever, solidifying him as the ideal compromise between Kat’s vision of her dream dog and her lease requirements.

It has been a few months since Rory was adopted, and it’s love all around. So, in order to celebrate the same “It’s a Dog!” online pet gift registry announcement that I worked with the  NexGard® (afoxolaner) team on earlier this year, I asked my sister if she wouldn’t mind us turning the blog’s spotlight on the newest furry member of our at-large household. Happily, both pup and pup owner were more than willing to oblige.


We officially introduced puppy Rory to our big family of pets over the long Memorial Day weekend back in May. Between my parents’ 3 labs and 2 cats and our 1 dog and 3 cats, it was a lot to take in for a new puppy who had been, up until that point, used to living alone in his new apartment. Thankfully, the introduction was a relatively easy one, and everyone was coexisting together within the hour.

In honor of a puppy joining the ranks alongside our collection of older dogs, I figured this was the perfect opportunity to share suggestions for adding activity to your pet’s lifestyle. Whether your own canine is new, like Rory, or more on the senior side like our hound dog, Rocky, and my parents’ trio of labs, these tips should have your pet feeling fit and having



  • Take a hike: We leashed up Rory and our own dog, Rocky, on Memorial Day, then headed out into the woods for a good long walk. It was the perfect way to tire both boys out and get their hearts pounding.
  • Have a playdate: In the same vein, nothing motivates activity in a pet’s day quite like rough-housing with a fellow canine.
  • Go to class: Even if your pup is well-versed in tricks and commands, sign them up for a training class annually. It’s a great way to encourage socializing, plus you’ll both have an excuse to get out and about.
  • Play fetch: Got a backyard? A long, furniture-free hallway? A nearby dog park? Throw a pet-approved ball for your dog so that he is consistently running a few controlled laps every day.
  • Make him work for it: Whenever rewarding your pet with a dog treat, try holding the biscuit a little aloft of his head so that he has to bounce up a few inches in the air for it, or even toss it a few feet off to the side so that he races for it to get his pulse going.


As my sister discovered throughout the course of the last year, new pet ownership is a big step. There is so much to consider and there are so many questions to ask, but the uncertainty is well worth the moment you lay eyes on the dog you’re meant to love for his or her entire life.


And with that, it’s time to remind you about the online pet gift registry that the
NexGard® (afoxolaner) team has launched. To get started, visit and put together a digital list of things your new pup will need when he or she finally comes home (think: a crate, food and water bowls, toys, washable blankets, etc.).


Deciding which dog to bring home from the shelter is a huge decision. Figuring out which new pet necessities to bring home from the store shouldn’t be. The NexGard team wants to lend a helping hand in welcoming your new dog—whether he or she is a puppy or a senior—into a new home. So, let the NexGard team make this big life transition a little easier on both of you by visiting to get educated and excited now.


*The maker of NexGard worked with bloggers like me for its It’s A Dog! program. This blog has been written by me on behalf of the NexGard team. Merial is now part of Boehringer Ingelheim. I received compensation for my time.