Dogs are the best, and we all want to make sure that our furry friends stay healthy and happy.
But sometimes, it can be tough to know how to get started on a fitness program for your pup.
Never fear - this post is here to help! I'll give you some tips on how to get your dog in shape, as well as some recommended exercises and activities.
Let's get started!
Keep Track of Meals Size
Feeding your dog is slightly more complex than pouring food in the bowl! Like humans, dogs need only a certain amount of calories, which depend on several factors. Those are age, size, breed, physical activity, and overall health.
You can easily overfeed your little doggo with food and make him obese in a short time without even noticing it right off the bat!
To prevent this, consult your vet about the optimal food amount for your dog. Measure each meal with a measuring cup or scale and be consistent.
Increase Daily Walks
Walking is one of the most beneficial activities for everyone! You and your dog will both benefit from taking the extra kilometre during a routine walk.
It can be a morning or evening walk, or whatever time of the day when you have time but be careful in the hotter months.
A slightly longer walk will only take half an hour more, but the health benefits are huge for both sides, as we said! After a while, increase the walking distance or speed up the walking pace.
Play With Your Dog
Some dog breeds don't need humans to motivate them to play. Others need engagement and interactive games to remain playful.
Keep active outdoors during interactive games and spend quality time with your furry friend. Limited space shouldn't be an obstacle to playing with your dog.
Indoors, you can come up with nose play or tricks learning, and outdoors you can play fetch. It will provide exercise for your dog and require only minimal engagement from your side.
Moreover, regular play sessions with the owner keep the dog happy, which is one of the prerequisites for a healthy/active dog!
Be Careful With Treats!
Like human snacks, dog treats are only empty calories. These can be useful when you're teaching your dog proper toilet habits or tricks, but don't go overboard.
We recommend low calorie treats or even holding back a few of their morning kibble to use as rewards later in the day.
The Best Dog Exercises
Now let's briefly go through some dog exercises you can try to keep your dog fit! Walking, running and cycling are always recommended but have you tried any of the below?
If the weather is awful outside, try running with your dog up and down the stairs several times!
It is a great cardio exercise for humans and a magnificent way to help your dog build muscles and get in better shape.
Unless you have a very hairy dog, like Chow Chow, swimming is a great dog-friendly activity!
Most people like swimming, and this physical activity is also good for your dog's joints and muscles.
Next time you are ready to hit the beach, bring your dog and enjoy the mutual swimming session!
All great dog trainers agree - tug games are great for learning control, building muscles, and motivation for your dogs.
You can also play it indoors as a quick workout session when you don't have much time or space for additional games.
Don't forget to let your dog win. It will make them feel good about themselves!
The session should take two or three tugs, and the dog should win in at least one!
Remember, all dogs are individual. Whether your dog is a couch potato or an energetic explorer, you will need to adjust the training and exercise accordingly.
If you have any questions about what style of training would be best for your pup, feel free to give us a call.