Most of us have given some thought to our bucket lists — you know, the most important things we need to do before we die. Like jump out of a plane or visit every continent. But what’s on your dog’s bucket list? Well, the terrific thing about dogs is that it takes very little to make them enormously happy, and we're willing to bet that these activities will guarantee your pooch one awesome life.
Some of the stuff on this list require a bit of planning while others are a piece of cake — but there's no question that your best bud deserves to enjoy every single one.
1. Go camping together.
**If your dog is a city dweller and hasn’t yet experienced the pure joy of sprinting through the woods until exhaustion kicks in, eating all the burned hot dogs, and then falling asleep next to the warmth of the campfire, then maybe it’s time. Check out this list of pet-friendly campsites for nearby options and load up the car!
2. A chance to pee where the wild things are. (No, seriously!)
Sort of implied by Item 1, but seriously, imagine your dog’s joy when she gets to mark the same tree as a bear or a mountain lion. The power! The prestige! It’s like the dog version of getting your picture on the cover of TIME.
3. Swim in the ocean.
For any water-loving dog, it’s hard to imagine a more glorious experience. Here’s a list of off-leash dog beaches, including some freshwater options for those of us who don’t live on a coast!
4. Eat a really amazing steak.
If the finest meat he’s ever eaten is what comes out of the wet food can, treat your dog to the meal of his lifetime. Keep it ultra rare and skip the sauce - no need for frills here!
5. Lick your plate after an awesome meal.
It may not seem like much to you, but one chance to slurp up whatever bits and pieces remain from your meal before the dishes go into the wash is bound to be incredibly satisfying to your dog. Remove all small fish or chicken bones from the plate first, and make sure the meal did not include garlic, onions, chocolate, or cinnamon (dogs are allergic to these common human foods). Then let him go to town!
6. Luxury dog daycare.
Credit: Paradise Ranch
If your dog is the sociable type, a luxury doggie daycare facility is like an all-day party as far as your dog is concerned. Even if you’re home during the day, it might be fun for your dog to attend a luxury dog daycare once or twice in her life.
7. Find the BEST local dog park.
If you live in a city, there may be a dozen to choose from just a short drive away. If you’re in a more rural area, then it’s an excuse for a road trip! Safety note: before you go to any off-leash dog park, be sure your dog is spayed/neutered, fully immunized, friendly with new dogs, and that she’ll obey important commands like ‘come’ and ‘leave it’. Here’s a list of off-leash dog parks in the USA.
8. Ride in a convertible.
If one window rolled down is good, then no windows or roof at all must be amazing! Let your dog get the 360° experience (and get a chance to try a sweet ride yourself) by renting from your local car service or borrowing from a swank friend.
9. Go canoeing.
It’s like riding in a car… but in water. Woahhhhh.
10. Smell some rare scents.
No, I’m not talking about a bottle of Creed Royal Mayfair. (Although if you, the human, need an excuse…) Call your nearest zoo and see what they say if you ask for an ounce or two of the old straw bedding from the elephant enclosure. Or see what your dog thinks of some samples of exotic wood from a furniture repair shop. Or even of some fancy cheeses or unusual herbs from the grocery store. It’s the smell equivalent of taking your dog on a trip around the world, but without the noisy airplanes or lengthy quarantines!
11. Sleep in your bed.
Okay, so some of us already do this, even though it’s not great for those with insomnia or allergies. (In that case, maybe just a tandem nap on the couch?) But given that this is what most dogs probably do as soon as we leave the house, maybe we can officially permit it once or twice.
12. Try ALL the dog treats.
Your dog’s absolute ultimate shopping spree. Avoid indigestion by parcelling out the treats over days or weeks (depending on how well-stocked your pet store is!), but try everything at least once!
13. Get a massage.
Yes, it’s a thing, and for your dog it’s like a regular petting, but better. You may have a nearby groomer or animal physical therapist who offers this service, but if not, check out this article and give it a try at home for free.
14 - Be the center of attention at a party.
An excited, friendly dog at a party often has to be crated or put outside to avoid annoying any guests with allergies or phobias. But if your guest-list consists entirely of dog lovers, there’s no need. Make your dog the occasion, and let her bask in all the extra love and attention!
15 - Make a best dog-friend .
If yours is an only-dog, he may be hungering for some canine companionship. Post on craigslist, set up a few dog dates, and see who your dog clicks with. Then, if possible, make it a regular play-date. There’s nothing like the joy on a dog’s face when he sees a familiar car carrying his BFF pull into the driveway.
16 - This.
No commentary needed. Just watch the video.
Main image credit: Paradise Ranch