10 Ways to Help Your Dog Get Enough Exercise
When adding a pet to your family, you sign up for the responsibility of all their needs. One of the biggest responsibilities that is often neglected can be exercise. Although we would love to cling to our air-conditioned homes during the hot summer months, sometimes we must get outside for the sake of our dogs. However, watch out for those extreme heat days that could potentially be dangerous for your pet! Don’t miss Petplan’s chart on the risk of taking your pet outside.
When all is safe for you and your pet, here are a few ideas on how to get your dog outside for some exercise!
1. Find out how much exercise your dog needs
First, it’s important determine exactly how much exercise your dog should be getting each day. A small Chihuahua will need significantly less exercise than an Australian Shepherd and an adult dog will need more exercise than a senior pup. To get a better understanding of your pup’s unique needs, consult your veterinarian on your next visit.
2. Exercise With Your Dog
I can go on and on about this topic! When I had my boxer, we would go on runs around the neighborhood. Nothing acts as better motivation than your dog pulling the leash with excitement to keep going. Once your pet is tired, it’s about time for you to be done as well. You can use the opportunity to create a better bond between you and your pet.
3. Schedule daily walks
Most people like to follow a daily routine: wake up, brush your teeth, jump in the shower, head to work, etc. To ensure your dog gets their proper exercise, include them in your routine. For example when I was in middle school, I was responsible for walking my dog every morning before I went to the bus stop and every afternoon when I got home. By doing this, walking my dog became the norm and he always got his exercise. After a while, he knew this was his routine and even brought me his leash to hold me accountable.
Dog parks can be a great way to meet other pet owners and give your dogs some new pals. While they run their little hearts out, you could relax with friends or family. The area creates a more natural setting for dogs to experience their exercise. However, don’t forget you cannot control the actions of other dogs, so watch your pup closely!
5. Set up a doggy playdate
While they can be fun for some dogs, dog parks can be too much for others. If your pup finds dog parks to be overwhelming, consider scheduling a doggy playdate with one or two other dogs. A simple playdate can help your pup burn off some energy and get in their social time safely without them becoming stressed or scared. These playdates can consist of playtime in your backyard or even just a regular walk around the neighborhood
6. Hire a dog walker
Sometimes people get stuck at work for long hours and don’t have the opportunity to stop at home and let the dog out. If this is something that happens to you, consider hiring a dog walker or a pet sitter to stop in and give your pet some playtime. Using a site like Sitting for a Cause can help you find a pet care professional in your area in your price range who can help make sure your dog gets some exercise throughout the day.
A tale as old as time: the game of fetch. A simple concept of throw and receive, this classic game will work for most dogs. By the consistent throwing involved, your pet continuously runs back and forth without missing a beat. Even better, this game doesn’t necessarily need to be outside!
8. Fun Gadgets
The internet remains full with new and trendy gadgets for the simplest of tasks. One of my personal favorites, the automatic ball thrower, I discovered through a viral video of a dog playing fetch all by himself. After about thirty more times of watching the video, I searched the internet for similar toys. I have found many similar products from hundreds of brands! Take a quick search for some creative exercise toys.
9. Treat Scavenger Hunt
This can be equally fun for you and your dog! Hiding treats around your home will make your pet work for what they want. Not only does this exercise them physically, but it puts them to work mentally too! However, be careful if there are lots of fragile items around your home. Make sure to hide the treats in areas where there’s no risk of your dog damaging anything.
10. Take Them For Errands
We all know the feeling of having a to-do list that seems endless. When you know you’re not going to be back home all day, consider bringing your furry friend with you! That being said, make sure you don’t leave them alone in your car. Many places have now become pet-friendly and the day will go by so much faster! Little do you realize, all the walking acts as a full workout for your dog.
How do you make sure your pup gets enough exercise? Leave a comment and let us know!