Get Fit With Your Dog
Is Your Dog Out of Shape? Strive For Fitness Together!
Fitness for both you and your dog are equally important. While there are ways to exercise your dog while being lazy yourself, it only makes sense to get in shape together. Just like people, dogs that are healthy and fit are happier and live longer. I kept my Labrador, Jet, in shape all his life (after adopting him when he was 2 years old and 40 kgs!!) feeding him raw food and exercising him every day and he lived to the ripe old age of 14 years and 8 months with no illnesses during his lifetime.
Your dog doesn’t ask much from you but provides so much. Give your dog and yourself the gift of fitness and longevity.
Get fit with your dog and share some quality time together with these activities
Most dogs are naturally excellent swimmers. Swimming is a very healthy, low-impact exercise for you and your dog.
When introducing your dog to your pool firstly teach them how to exit as it’s not always easy for a dog to figure out how to get out of the pool when they start to tire.
Take your dog hiking
Dogs love to go for walks, but they love to hike even more. The variety of terrain and smells is more interesting to the average dog. The natural surface is much easier on their feet than a concrete footpath.
Hiking is a great stress reliever for dogs and humans. Consider how much time dingos, wolves and foxes spend “hiking” each day. It’s a very natural activity for your dog. At one time, humans spent most of their day hiking too.
Remember that you can’t take your dog into national parks so find a good hiking trail that doesn’t go through a national park.
Think of trail running as hiking at higher speed. It’s a great workout for both of you. Take it easy if you haven’t been running recently and consistently. Consider this to be an advanced activity for both of you.
Dogs love camping
Dogs love to camp. Camping goes great with swimming and hiking. Try it with your dog and see how much you both enjoy it. Once again, remember that you can’t take your dog into national parks so find a good camping spot that isn’t in a national park.
Rollerblading with your dog
Rollerblading isn’t as popular as it once was but it’s still a great activity to do with your dog. It’s a great way to pick up the pace, which your dog will love, without being too hard on you.
Agility with your dog
Why not join in on this agility course with your dog! This 6-piece exercise agility course is a great way to keep your dog in shape and active and you can run along with your dog so that you get some exercise too. The Outward Hound Zip & Zoom Agility Kit is an indoor agility and fitness course for dogs featuring a wide square tunnel for your dog to run through, four poles for your dog to weave through quickly to train their agility and an adjustable high jump hurdle for a true fitness test.
Keep your dog active
There are some great toys available that will help to keep your dog active when they are on their own. This Home Alone toy from Aussie Dog is a hanging bungee ball that prevents boredom, barking, separation anxiety and can reduce the destruction of your home. Your dog can play tug of war with the toy and, as he releases it, the ball will spring up which will then encourage more play.
Walking your dog
The old standby is always available. Every dog is excited by the prospect of a walk. Just produce the leash and watch your dog go bonkers. Some owners have taught their dog to walk on a treadmill but that doesn’t help the owner get in shape. It also deprives their dog of the opportunity to read all the pee-mails and to leave some themselves!
Running with your dog
Once you’ve both increased your conditioning, consider participating in a short road race with your dog. 5k is a popular distance for human-dog running teams. There’s something very special about running with your dog. While you may not have a penchant for squeaky toys, and he may not get excited about gardening, running is an experience that the two of you can share with equal enthusiasm and, as fellow endurance beasts, a rough match of ability.
Traditional fetch is great for the dog but doesn’t do much for the owner. Mix it up a bit. Throw the ball and then you both run after it. You’ll never win but you’ll get some great exercise in the process. Get the ball back from your dog and repeat. See who decides to give up first!
Dogs love to be active but they’re quite content to sleep the day away if there’s nothing interesting going on.
Why not share time and get in shape together. Lose a few kilos and increase your fitness together. You’ll both have a great time.
See the Ideal Weight for Your Dog Breed and you might also like to read 11 Tips to Help You to Enjoy Running with Your Dog.
Disclosure: Some links in this blog are affiliate links. You don’t pay more for the product but, if you buy from the link, we’ll get a small commission. We only recommend products and online retailers we trust.