This post was written by Evelyn Avila-Palmacci, dog walking/boarding expert from Tail Waggers. Tail Waggers is a dog walking and pet boarding organization, servicing the Aurora and Newmarket area. They promote personalized care for your furry friend, so you can rest easy knowing that your bff is in best possible care when you aren’t around. Check them out at: http://www.tail-waggers.ca
Have you heard the sentence:
RING DOOR BELL AND RUN! THE DOG NEEDS EXERCISE?
If I haven’t take my pooch out for his daily romp, he’ll let me know either by walking from one side to another like a crazy, by making weird noises and/or giving me a hopeful look.
Just like humans, dogs need a balanced diet and exercise in order to be healthy. These activities have to be fun and encourage much needed mental and physical stimulation that leads to a happy and balanced doggy soul.
The more fun activities you engage in with your pooch, the stronger the bond between the two of you will be.
When making your dog your exercise buddy, the first thing is to take a trip to the vet to obtain an evaluation, just in case there are any heart, lung, or other health problems. If the dog is older you want also be aware of any signs of arthritis or musculoskeletal disease. A dog with inflamed joints or ligaments may require a low-impact exercise plan.
Once you have talked to the vet, it’s the time to create a workout routine that’s realistic based on your lifestyle and your dog’s needs. Whatever routine you pick, start off with a short-term goal every day and gradually work up to 30 minutes on most days of the week. AVOID exercise routines right after meals and please don’t over exert!
How do you know if your dog is saying: I need a break?
- fast breathing
- panting excessively
- A refusal to follow
Always bring water bottle and foldable drinking bowl to prevent heat exhaustion. Short-faced breeds – such as bulldogs and boxers – are especially vulnerable because they don’t pant efficiently. Long walks on rough surfaces can damage a dog’s paws. The more the dogs are walked, they will develop thicker pads on their feet. On hot days, please, watch out for prolonged contact with asphalt or sand. If it is too hot for you it’s likely too hot for your pooch! The same applies for the winter season.
What about seniors?
Senior dogs, especially those with arthritis, certainly need exercise to help them increase flexibility, endurance and strength in the muscles around the joints, as well as to avoid obesity.
Here is a list of the most common exercises where you can bring your dog along – so you can both get fit.
Walking: The benefits include a stronger heart, lower blood pressure, more energy, denser bones, and a lower risk of depression. It also allows for continued behaviour training and contributes to the owner-pet bond.
Dancing: Also known as “musical freestyle.” Have your pooch run between your legs and perform tricks, while both of you get an aerobic workout. The benefits of dance include burning calories and developing greater stamina, better balance, lower blood pressure, and improved muscle tone and bone density.
Doga: “Doga” incorporates your pet into Hatha yoga poses. For example, you recline in resting pose with your legs bent over your terrier’s torso. It is a very nice experience for the human-animal bond but I will certainly add another valid exercise plan for dogs.
And don’t forget:
- Agility Training
- Dog Park
Humans and dogs were designed to walk, run, jump, and dance. Basically we were made to move. So show your pooch some love deserves by spending quality time with him.
A lack of exercise robs the body of an essential ingredient. ~Karen Sessions