Best Dog Exercise Tips
No matter what kind of dog you have, how old they are, or what time of year it is, exercise is essential for your dog. We at Happy Wags! have compiled some dog exercise tips just to make sure that you are exercising your dog properly.
To keep your dog safe outside, a harness is a must have. Dogs love to run outdoors, and harnesses are a great choice to protect their airways.
Why Exercise is Important
There are a multitude of reasons why exercising your dog is important. First of all, exercise keeps dogs’ hearts and bodies trim and healthy. According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, over 50% of dogs are overweight. Regular daily exercise can help to keep the extra pounds off.
Exercise is also integral to your dog’s mental health. Going outside and sniffing, or playing an exciting game, allows your dog to experience new things and use all of their senses. Mental stimulation keeps your pup from getting bored, preventing them from starting trouble around the house. Going for walks is especially important for socialization; meeting and playing with other dogs helps them learn coping skills that will keep them confident and unafraid of other people and dogs.
Routine is Key
Dogs need to be exercised every single day, no matter how rainy it is outside or how tired you are from work. Get into the routine of taking your dog for a walk at the same time every day. This will end up being a time with your dog that you look forward to.
Your dog’s weight and age will dictate how often and far that they need to be walked; listen to what they need! Be wary of over-exercising; puppies and senior dogs will become exhausted if they are forced to do activities that they do not have enough energy or strength for. It is good to be especially cautious with some large breeds, such as Great Danes, that keep growing until they are up to two years old. If these breeds are pushed too hard, there is a chance that they could experience joint and bone problems.
Once you get into this routine with your dog and know what kind of exercise that they want and need, exercise will be easy and enjoyable for both of you.
Be Weather Aware
Since your dog needs daily exercise, you can’t let undesirable weather get in the way. However, there are precautions that you can take to make sure that your dog has the best workout possible in any weather.
During the hot summer weather, it is important that your dog stays hydrated, especially if you’re taking them on a long hike. Your dog will want to keep up with you every step of the way, so make sure that he has the water and food to do so! A lightweight bowl is a great option to throw into your bag so your pup can stop and have a drink whenever you do.
In the winter, your dog becomes cold due to the snow. In that case, it might be time to invest in some clothing for your dog. Not only will they be the most fashionable dog on the block, but they’ll be warm enough to get the proper exercise they need. We personally think a puffer coat like this will look particularly fetching on them in the winter months.
Switch It Up!
If your dog is super active, why not try out a new activity with them? Here are a few of our favourite suggestions:
- Jogging: Your dog loves to keep up with you, so why not take them on your daily runs? They'll love going through the neighbourhood or trails with you.
- Hiking: What could be better than spending time in nature with your dog? Hiking allows for a different kind of walking experience, with so many unique things to sniff. Check out our tips for hiking with your dog here.
- Swimming: Swimming can be a low-intensity form of exercise for any dog; it can be especially nice for dogs that have some joint pain.
We hope that these dog exercise tips will help you and your dog get into a new exercise routine that helps you both to stay fit, healthy, and entertained!