Just like us, dogs need daily exercise to stay sharp and keep fit. But, how much exercise is needed and what type of exercise is best? In this article, we take a look at 11 of the best ways to exercise your dog, whether it is outdoors or indoors. And, if you’re working from home due to the pandemic, we have a solution for you.
How Much Exercise Should Your Pup Get Daily?
The amount of exercise that your dog needs daily is dependent on the breed, their age, and their tolerance levels. Here at [Backyard Dog Care and Boarding] we see a lot of smaller dogs that may only need 20-30-minutes, while larger breeds like to run for upwards of 60-90-minutes. It is important to remember though, that the recommended daily exercise is just that, a recommendation and may not be the best fit for your pup.
5 Outdoor Exercises for Your Pup!
If you can get your dog outside in a socially distanced manner, consider the following exercises:
1. The Classic Walk. This is a more easy-going exercise, but it helps your dog get the physical movement they need while keeping their hearing, eyesight, and tracking senses sharp. Let your dog take their time and be a little curious about the smells of the environment. Consider taking a new route to make things a little more exciting.
2. Outdoor Fetch. If you can get yourself to a large, open space, play fetch. It’s a fantastic form of moderate exercise for your pup, allowing them to run or walk depending on how far and fast you throw the ball.
3. Jogging/Running Partners. If you enjoy running or jogging, your dog can become a wonderful companion. It is a great form of exercise for some breeds of dogs, but only works if your pup has reliable recall. Do not run in hot temperatures or on asphalt, and make sure that your dog’s exercise tolerance level matches yours.
4. Cycling. If you have a bicycle, you can ride with your pup running beside you. However, start off very slowly and don’t take a lot of twists and turns. Consider purchasing an attachment for the leash, as this will help keep your pup beside you, and never behind. Take frequency breaks and don’t cycle in hot temperatures.
5. Swimming. This is an excellent option for older dogs that may have arthritis or sore joints. While some breeds of dogs are natural swimmers, you may need to teach yours to swim. It is okay for your dog to swim in a chlorinated pool, in so long as you give them a bath afterwards to wash away the chlorine.
4 Indoor Exercises for Your Dog!
If you are unable to take your dog out because it is unsafe due to the pandemic, there are other indoor alternatives that you can use in place of a walk.
1. Run the Stairs/Play Fetch. If you have a decently sized staircase in your home, you can give your dog a mini-workout by having them chase a toy down the stairs. Simply call them back to you, and begin the round over. The change in elevation will give them a challenge. This is good for dogs that are mobile enough to maneuver stairs, but is not a suitable option for dog breeds with smaller legs where there is a chance of injury.
2. Have a Large Space? Obstacle Courses! Look for things around your home that you can use to create an obstacle course with. Couch cushions and blankets make for a great tunnel system and hula hoops are great for mini-jump-throughs. You can make mini-jumps out of pool noodles or broomsticks.
3. Hide Treats Around the House. Play hide and seek with treats. Place their favorite treats in hard to find areas such as under rugs, in and around tables, behind doors, or along edges of furniture where it meets the floor. This will engage their hunting instincts and keep them busy tracking down the treats for hours. While this isn’t nearly as intensive as running or walking, it does keep your dog moving throughout the day.
4. Bubbles! Dog breeds that have a strong “prey” instinct will love to chase bubbles. The only thing you need to be careful with here is that the bubble mixture used isn’t harmful to their eyes. Consider getting scented bubbles that smell like bacon or peanut butter.
You can also play tug of war, but only do this if you control your dog’s power and instincts. This type of game can become quite dangerous if your pup goes too far with it.
Working From Home Due to Covid-19?
If you are working from home due to Covid-19 and still want your dog to get the socialization they need with other dogs, as well as a good outdoor workout in, consider enrolling them into our doggy day care.Like most doggie day cares, here at [Backyard Dog Care and Boarding], we have a fenced in community area that creates a large enough space for your dog to socialize with others of similar size and breeding. This gives your pup the ability to chase, fetch ball, and run while choosing who, when and how they interact with others.