Keep your dog in shape by exercising him
Now is a great time to start getting in shape for the summer since the weather is getting warmer.
You and your dog can exercise together without going to the gym. Here are 8 ways you can exercise with your dog. Your pup will thank you too.
8 ways to exercise you and your dog
Consult your veterinarian before starting any strenuous exercise regime, especially if your dog is a couch potato or has any medical conditions.
It seems obvious and we all do it. Why not mix it up a bit? As you walk, do some lunges. To get the blood pumping, try walking uphill or stair climbing. The variety will make your dog happy.
It is not for every dog to run (particularly flat-faced breeds like pugs and bulldogs) and like anything, start small and work up to longer distances; don’t start with a 5km run! Once you establish a routine, your dog will drag you out of bed for a run, giving you the motivation you need on those days when you would rather hit the snooze button.
Both you and your dog will benefit from swimming. Jump into the water at a dog beach. If your dog is a good swimmer, you can get great life vests so he doesn’t tire too soon. Why not try kayaking or paddleboarding if your doggie is up for it.
4 Bike riding
As soon as your pup is trained to run alongside you, they will love a bike ride. You can begin by walking your bike on your property or a back street with your dog until they get used to the bike’s movement and your commands. Stopping and starting are good practice. Once you’re comfortable, hop on and take it slow. You can even get special bike leads that will absorb any sudden pulling your dog might do so that you don’t fall off.
Rollerblades, anyone? It’s a great cardio workout and a lot of fun. Your dog will enjoy getting up to speed and running alongside you. Before bringing your friend, make sure you are confident in them. To avoid distracting your dog, start on a quiet street or on your property.
Bring some equipment down to the park (like cones to run between or a tunnel to run through) or use the play equipment that is already there (like hurdles) to teach your pup agility. You and your pup will have so much fun learning something new that you won’t even notice how much you are running after them.
7 Strength training
The tug of war is great for toning your arms and is loved by dogs. Hold a rope with your pup on the other end while holding a squat position, keeping your posture in mind. Try things like tricep dips with your pup on your lap if your pup is small. Have fun and be creative!
8 Active fetch
Nobody says you have to stand there while your pup brings the ball back to you. Try to beat them to the ball. Try burpees or lunges before your dog brings the ball back. Squat when picking up the ball.
Dogs are the best exercise partners because they are eager, never bail out at the last minute, and will never complain about going a little harder.
If you are having fun with what you are doing, it won’t feel like work.
You don’t have a dog? Your local shelter would appreciate a volunteer to exercise the dogs awaiting their forever homes.
For a list of animal shelters & rescues, please visit our directory.
How do you exercise your dog? We’d love to hear how you and your pup stay fit together.