Regular exercise is essential for your body to stay healthy and fit. Just like humans, it works for dogs as well. Exercise is one of the basic needs of your dogs. Life gets busy, so many of us forget to give our dogs the exercise they need.
How much exercise do dogs need?
Dogs should, generally, get one to two hours of exercise daily to help keep them healthy. Your dog may need more or less depending on its breed, age, and tolerance. If your dog is starting out new to exercise, make sure to start slowly and let the dog build up tolerance and endurance to exercise. Watch for signs of exhaustion such as wheezing, heavy panting, slowing or stopping to lie down during activities. Limit outdoor activities on very hot days, and be sure your dog has access to fresh, cool water at all times. Stop or reduce exercise if your dog seems tired, achy or disinterested in exercise. Contact your vet if you notice any signs of illness during or after exercise.
What Kind of Exercise Is Best for My Dog?
There are many activities you can do with your dog while exercising at the same time. Some activities provide more exercise for your dog than for you but are still a fun way to bond. Play fetch with a ball or disc, visit the dog park , or have your dog participate in VIP DayCamp.
Walking is the classic form of exercise you can give to your dogs. You don’t have to rush it. Let your dog take time to sniff around during the walk. Try to take a different route every so often so your dog will get to see and smell new things.
Running is a great form of exercise for some dogs. Not all dogs can tolerate this type of exercise, but some dogs simply can’t get enough. Running your dog without a leash is not usually a good idea for safety and legal reasons. However, it may be considered if your dog has a truly reliable recall and local laws allow off-leash dogs. Make sure to start slowly and work your way up to higher speeds and longer distances. Avoid running in hot temperatures, especially on hot asphalt as it can burn paws. Bring plenty of water along on runs.
Not every dog is built to run alongside your bike. This can be dangerous in some cases (for you and your dog). However, riding a bike with your dog can be fun if you do it right. The most important thing is to start slowly. Let your dog get used to the bike. Your dog should always be leashed, so you may want to find a good bicycle attachment so you won’t have to hold your dog’s leash.
If you love nature and you love dogs, then hiking with your dog might be perfect for you. Hiking gives your dog a chance to explore the world on a deeper level than a simple walk.
Contrary to popular belief, not all dogs know how to swim. Other dogs simply don’t like to swim. But if you have a water dog, you know it. Let that dog swim. You can incorporate the game of fetch with swimming to make it even more fun. However, start with a doggie lifejacket and shallow water until she gets the hang of it. If she likes the water, it won’t be long before she is fine on her own. If she doesn’t like the water, don’t push it. She might just be a land lover. VIP offers swim lessons and aqua exercise in a controlled environment that your dog will love.
There are many fun games you can play with your dog, some of which will provide some exercise too. Fetch, hide-and-seek and tug of war all provide moderate exercise for your dog and light exercise for you.
VIP DayCamp & Exercise
What’s cool about all of this is if you have a busy schedule and don’t have time to give your dog the exercise they need then drop them off with us here at Very Important Paws and we will make sure they get the exercise they need during day camp.
Check with your vet before starting any type of exercise regimen for your dog.
When exercising with your dog, let her set the pace. Take breaks for water and rest. Avoid exercising in hot temperatures. No matter what type of dog you have, watch for signs of exhaustion, illness or injury. When in doubt, stop exercising and head home.