Doggy Fitness: Tips on keeping your canine chum fit and happy

Doggy fitness and activity is an important part of your pooch’s daily routine. Regular exercise and activity will help keep them mentally stimulated, make your dog feel happier and maintain their weight. It’s important to make sure your dog has at least one walk a day so they don’t become frustrated.

Puppies require different levels of exercise to enable healthy growth. Over exercising can lead to damage to their joints, which can increase the risk of developing early arthritis.

A good calculation, recommended by the Kennel Club, is to allow five minutes of exercise per month of age, up to twice daily. For example, a three-month-old puppy will require 15 minutes of exercise up to twice daily.

Dog walkers with Dalmatian dogs - How often should I walk my dog?

It’s worth remembering that time spent out in your garden is not the same as being able to explore new and different environments like your local park. Once your dog has reached adulthood there are some exciting ways to exercise your canine chum. You could try:

  • Running with your dog – benefits both yourself and your dog.
  • Fly ball – this is similar to a human relay race in that there are teams of dogs participating. The course consists of four hurdles which your dog will need to jump over to reach the end of the track. Once at the end, there will be a box of tennis balls (a dog’s idea of heaven, we know!) which your dog will need to stomp on to grab one. They must then carry this back to the starting line and once the line has been crossed the next dog will do the same until all the balls are at the starting line. This is a competitive sport so consider wisely!
  • Agility – ideal for dogs with high energy levels. It consists of running and jumping over obstacles. Again, this can be a competitive sport.
  • Power walks – Why not take your daily walks up a notch? This’ll help with your fitness too!
  • A simple game of fetch – Who could resist this classic activity?
  • Allowing your dog play with other dogs – Enjoy watching your best friend bounding around with other dogs in the park or at a dog-friendly beach.

It’s also worth remembering to exercise your dog’s brain and provide cognitive challenges, for example training them to bow on command or challenging them with a puzzle toy.

There are lots of other ways in which you can help look after your dog’s fitness; these have hopefully just provided a few ideas to get you started!

It’s fun to get outdoors and explore. Get complete peace of mind by having dog insurance in place. Dog insurance cover will help you with any unexpected vet fees should your canine companion need treatment.

More pets = more fun!

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