It's National Canine Fitness Month
According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, an estimated 60% of cats and 56% of dogs in the United States were overweight or obese just last year.
Dogs need exercise, socialization, and outdoor play time just as much as we do. Being outside gives pets the opportunity to mingle with other animals, bond with their pet owners, smell new scents and explore new territory. Because outdoor activity is so important for any dog, this month focuses on keeping man's best friend happy and healthy with the proper nutrition and physical activity.
Like humans, if dogs remain inactive, they are putting themselves at risk of cardiovascular diseases including canine diabetes, the risk of cancer and obesity. For this reason and more, it's important to spend time with your pets outside.
Dogs need a chance to burn off pent-up energy and get at least 30 minutes of daily activity. Here are some ways to bond with your pets while getting exercise with your dog:
- Take your dog to a local dog park. Dogs will make new friends and be happier in this environment.
- Throw a ball, Frisbee or stick to your dog and let them run for it.
- Play Hide-and-Go Seek with your dog.
- Walk or run with your dog.
- Swim with your dog.
- Incorporate dog aerobics and play fitness games into your dog training. Have your dog stand-up, jump, spin or roll over.
- Create obstacle courses in the backyard for your dog to run up-and-down, jump over and run freely.
- Send your dog to dog exercise centers; dog boarding centers; and dog fat camps; to get fit from a certified dog fitness trainer.