HOW TO WORK OUT WITH YOUR DOG
Getting fit and losing weight tends to be at the top of everyone’s New Year’s resolutions list. While many gyms are filled with enthusiastic people at the start of the year, the numbers soon start to dwindle.
Looking for a way to keep yourself motivated all year long? Why not use an enthusiastic workout buddy – your dog! Not only is your furry friend the perfect workout coach and motivator but working out with your pup is also beneficial for them. Pet obesity is becoming a top concern for vets across the country and keeping your pup physically active this year will not only help keep them happy and healthy but also give you more bonding time.
Check out these fun workout activities you can perform with your pet to keep you both active and moving this year:
GO ON A HIKE
Hikes are perfect for both you and your furry friend. They cater to your dog’s natural inclination to explore and your need for physical activity. Determine if there are any hiking paths near you and take your pup for a day filled with exercise and adventure! Before you head out, be sure to pack the essentials. Just like you, dogs need an adequate amount of food and water to fuel them on their journey, so be sure to pack dog food, water and a bowl.
Although it is widely believed that all dogs can swim, this is not entirely true. Some pups simply do not like to swim or have difficulty with it. However, if your pup loves the water, swimming can be a great exercise for you both! This low-impact activity helps build muscle while putting less stress on the joints and skeletal system than other exercises. You can swim laps or even make it more fun by incorporating a game of fetch for a mutually beneficial workout. This exercise can be especially helpful for older dogs or pups with previous injuries.
Yoga is one of the trendiest ways to exercise with your furry friend. It even has its own name – doga! This practice focuses on gentle stretching, meditation and dog massage. Not only is it a fun way to get in shape, it also provides a great bonding experience between you and your pup. You can perform doga at home through instructional videos that can teach you poses such as the Forward Bend, Heart and Hound, Seated Bridge and Downward Dog. Alternatively, you can attend doga classes, which are being offered in an increasing number of cities.
Bike joring is when your dog pulls you on a bike and it’s a great way to channel some pup’s inner desire to pull while giving them plenty of physical exercise! As your dog jogs and pulls the bike, you can pedal to help change up the speed and help with hills. To add some resistance for you, lower the bike gear and pedal the whole time. This workout activity only works for larger dogs in top physical condition, so make sure your pup is up to the challenge. Be sure to stay to bike friendly paths and areas to ensure the safety of both you and your pup.
Create an obstacle course that you both can enjoy! Incorporate different obstacles that include jogging, sprinting, jumping and climbing. You can even tailor the obstacle course to make it more human-friendly by including human workout options at each station. For example, you can do 10 push-ups while your dog fetches a ball. This exercise training will have you sweating and your pup panting!