Exercising is essential for any adult dog, although the intensity and duration of this will depend on its specific age, size, and physical characteristics. Exercising your pet will not only help prevent obesity problems, but it will also make him feel free of stress, and ultimately make him have a good time.
We will also give you some basic advice such as whether to practice it before or after eating, what is the intensity level for a dog that practices agility, or how that helps them in self-control.
Keep reading this complete post from an animal expert about exercises for adult dogs and choose the option that suits you best. Some proposals will make you get fit too so pay attention:
Exercise benefits and basic tips
Encourage your dog to exercise or something much better: exercising with him has endless health benefits for both of you. To begin with, you should know that physical exercise is ideal for dogs suffering from stress or general behavioral problems since it helps them to release the discomfort that they have accumulated.
On the other hand, physical exercise is an effective way to prevent obesity in the dog, a very common and common problem. Keeping your dog away from being overweight also means keeping it away from the early onset of arthritis, osteoarthritis, or dysplasia. Although these diseases usually develop in the elderly stage, sometimes they can occur in dogs with an excessive weight to which they correspond.
It is very suitable for dogs that work in general obedience, whether advanced (as in the case of Agility) or basic. Being with your dog practicing exercise outdoors, helps him to continue relating to the environment, dogs, and other people.
How? When? Where?
If your dog has not exercised before you should not force him suddenly. It must be a progressive process and in which he is the protagonist: the objective will be to make him enjoy himself. Before practicing exercise, we must walk with our dog calmly so that it can relieve itself and we do not have to constantly stop the rhythm.
It is very important to keep in mind that the dog should not exercise if it has just eaten, we will always give it to it later to avoid gastric torsion.
We will choose a suitable time of day to exercise such as sunrise or sunset. Avoid the hours of the day when it is too hot, we must avoid at all costs a heat stroke in the dog.
Finally, it would be ideal to practice exercise in a safe environment, in which the dog feels comfortable and outdoors. Still do not worry if you can not meet these three options, we must adapt physical exercise to our possibilities.
Although there are exercises in which we do not actively participate, the truth is that the dog appreciates that we exercise with it, that is, being part of this activity. If he notices that we are barely paying attention to him or is running around, he will probably stop exercising in no time.
Be careful if your dog is one of the Molossus breeds as they have problems breathing properly. These breeds should practice moderate exercise. Some examples are:
- Dogue de Bordeaux
- English bulldog
Jogging with the dog
If you like to run and your dog also seems to like it, you can start jogging with it. You will not need many things: your shoes, a leash (if you do not leave your dog untied), and an appropriate place for it. Enjoy running around and having your dog follow you for a while to actively exercise.
The canicross is a very complete exercise for tireless dogs that allows you and your pet to run together linked by a leash. Melee, without using the arms. It is super good for dogs that need to exercise a lot, but remember that it will need an adaptation time that allows it to start to build muscles and pick up the right rhythm. You should be aware of him and the feelings he manifests as well as his level of tiredness.
At the competition level, it is recommended to carry out a veterinary review before starting the dog in active canicross since it is a very demanding exercise.
Tips for Jogging Dogs
- Check their pads regularly to make sure they are not damaged.
- Especially in the case of canicross, take great care to avoid your dog suffering from heatstroke.
- Always carry a small portable drinker with you, it can be useful.
- Adapt the dog’s diet to his level of physical activity.
- Visit the vet regularly to make sure everything is going well.
- Adapt the rhythm and duration to your ability.
Cycling with the dog
The bicycle is a fun sport and suitable for active but obedient dogs, in this way we actively exercise it in the city, mountains, or other places with the advantage that we will not get tired as much.
Remember that it is essential that your dog is obedient and understands well the basic commands of “hold”, “come on”, “right” and “left” so as not to cause an accident.
If you are wondering how to teach your dog to ride a bike, here we offer you a simple step-by-step that you should practice for a while before starting:
- Present the bike to your dog if he doesn’t know it, let him smell it, look at it and watch it move without fear.
- Get an adapter that connects the harness, the strap and the bicycle.
- Practice spinning with the dog and the bike without being up to see how it reacts. We recommend looking for a quiet place so that they can not distract you.
- If the dog adapts to riding the bike, try climbing at a moderate speed.
- Start working in quiet places and gradually ease the difficulty.
- Do not exceed the speed, observe the rhythm of your dog and compensate yourself with it.
- Check their pads regularly to make sure they are not damaged.
- Travel in safe places, do not expose your dog to an excessive approach to cars.
- Get yourself suitable and comfortable equipment for the animal. Look mainly at those with good cushioning.
Get started in Agility
Getting started in Agility, whether in competition or not, is a great way to practice obedience and exercise your pet actively and it is a very complete sport that you could even do at home if you had space to it. It is indicated for curious and agile dogs that have easy to memorize such as border collie.
Agility consists of a determined obstacle course that the dog must follow and overcome. The circuits include fences, walkways, tunnels and wheels among many others. It is fun and actively exercises the dog while we simply have to guide him.
Swimming and hydrotherapy
Just like for people, taking your dog to swim in the sea or in the pool is a very complete way of practicing exercise, as well as being very fun. For this, it will be essential that our dog accepts and tolerates water if he does not like it better we will think of another option.
Especially, in this case, we must take precautions to avoid possible drowning or gastric torsion, something that can happen if we have recently fed you. Pay attention to your dog at all times.
On the other hand, hydrotherapy is perfect for dogs suffering from muscle problems, injuries, dislocations, dysplasia, arthritis or arthrosis. It helps them exercise without feeling pain in their limbs. It is highly recommended to keep delicate dogs healthy.
Tips for Swimming Dogs
- Swimming is a very active exercise, hydrate it properly.
- If you are going to start swimming regularly with your dog, you should consider adapting its diet to a more complete one.
- Check its legs so that they are not wet for hours, otherwise, you could favor the appearance of fungi.
Sports with dog groups
If you have several dogs that are athletic and with a lot of energy, such as a group of several Siberian huskies, you could consider practicing Mushing, a sport that consists of a group of dogs pulling a cart that carries a passenger either in the snow or on earth. You can even buy some sports equipment for your dog using Amazon discount codes.
It is a sport that requires a high level of obedience, at least by “guide” dogs. It is a great way to exercise in packs as long as they are not forced and you have a proper overhaul of your pads.
Taking advantage of the snow we will mention Skijoring, a sport that consists of a dog and a skier linked by a harness such as the one used in canicross, although it has a longer strap that allows an adequate separation between skier and dog.
It is a very complete sport that will transport your dog to a totally different place. Remember that it is important to have a portable drinker at your disposal and to always spend a few minutes checking your dog’s pads to avoid burning them from the cold.
More relaxed options
Let your dog run on the pee-can
This first option allows your dog to run freely and exercise alone, something that he should be able to do on each walk for at least 5 minutes as recommended by ethologists.
Practicing exercise without a leash reinforces your bond and is that your dog will love to feel free and without ties outside. It is also important to practice obedience if we think about hiking or simply as a way to prevent a day from being lost.
When practicing exercise without a leash you can use a ball to chase, a frisbee a trunk as a fence to jump. All options are valid as long as your dog enjoys it with you. The optimal walk time is usually between 60 and 90 minutes long, spread over one, two, and even three walks. Always combining exercise and walking.
Having a minimum understanding of first aid is really useful for our dog. Here are some links so you know what to do in certain situations:
However, remember that if you have a true emergency, the most important thing will be to go to the vet. The sooner we treat our best friend, the better and the sooner he will recover.