No matter their breed or age, dogs thrive on physical activity. Just like humans, they need regular exercise to maintain their wellbeing and can quickly succumb to obesity and its considerable health risks when they don’t engage in as much physical activity as they need. Canine behaviorists, dog trainers, and top vets have a saying: A tired dog is a happy, healthy dog. And closely related is this: Healthy dogs are busy dogs.
Fit dogs are typically more well-behaved dogs—making sure that they have a daily dose of exercise will not only keep them in shape, but also prevent them from tearing apart your furniture or acting out in other ways. Though you should always consult your veterinarian regarding the specifics of your dog’s exercise regimen, the following guidelines can help you keep your furry friend active and happy.
When it comes to exercise, anything goes. Swimming, running, or just goofing off in the park are all excellent ways for your dog to stay in shape. Be sure to keep your dog moving for at least 30 minutes twice a day. Though all dogs need regular exercise, special considerations should be made in certain cases. Toy breeds generally cannot handle more intensive forms of activity such as jogging. If you have an older dog that suffers from arthritis, you should ask your vet about the types of exercise that will not cause undue discomfort.
Have Game Time
Aside from rigorous physical activity, you can keep your dog moving with playtime. Tug-of-war and fetch are two fun activities that will engage your pet and contribute to his or her overall wellbeing. These types of games will teach your furry friend impulse control, which will help when it’s eyeing your delicious dinner later that night.
Keep Them Busy
Most pet owners cannot hang out with their pets during most of the day, which is why you must find ways to keep them occupied while at home alone. Typically this means giving your pet enough interesting toys so that it won’t bother chewing up your couch or shoes. In addition to traditional chew toys, you can give your dog a Kong, a chewing device with hidden treats that it must work to retrieve.
Does your dog need to get in shape? At Chastain Veterinary Medical Group we are ready to serve you with locations in both north Dallas and the McKinney/Frisco area. For more information, please call either Preston Road Animal Hospital in north Dallas at 972-239-1309 or call Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in McKinney at 972-529-5033.