The month of April is dedicated to keeping our four-legged friends physically active and healthy. Just like their owners, dogs can suffer from obesity caused in part by a sedentary lifestyle. Carrying this extra weight can cause sore joints, respiratory issues, a higher risk of cancer and canine diabetes, and a shortened lifespan. A sedentary lifestyle also creates a bored pet that may acquire destructive tendencies. Canine Fitness Month is all about encouraging us to take a step towards a healthier lifestyle together with our pups.
You should always check with your veterinarian to make sure your pet is healthy enough for exercise, but see below for some fun and simple ways to get active with your pup.
- Go for a walk or a jog. This can be as simple as a trip around the neighborhood, or you can make an adventure out of it and hit a nature trail for some fresh air.
- Play fetch with your pup. Throwing their favorite ball or frisbee will get your dog running. Is your pup not interested in toys? Try a treat dispensing ball to encourage him.
- Does your best friend love water? Take him to the dog beach and let him splash around, or let him play with a sprinkler in your yard.
- Make a game out of treat time and hide snacks around your home for your pup to search for.
- Create an obstacle course for your pet. Have him weave in and out of chairs, crawl under tables, and jump over boxes for a reward.
- Take your pup to the park for some playtime with his neighborhood pals.
If your schedule doesn’t allow enough time for proper exercise for your pup every day, try daycare! This ensures your best friend gets plenty of love, attention, socialization and play on your busiest days, and comes home tired when you are too. After all, we all know a tired dog is a happy dog.