You likely know all about the benefits of exercise for humans. Exercise keeps your body fit, your mind sharp and your mood great. The same goes for your dog! Exercising a dog is an important part of being a good owner, but many people don’t see it as that high of a priority. Here, we list out a few benefits of exercising your dog – and they’re more than just physical!
A yoga class or a gym session after work does wonders to clear your head and melt away the stress of the day. Likewise, exercise also decreases anxiety in dogs. Pet owners who keep their dogs physically fit will notice that they have less destructive behaviors, such as chewing on furniture. A lack of exercise in dogs can manifest in destructive and attention-seeking behaviors, so get them to channel all their energy on a good walk or playtime instead!
Unfortunately, exercise won’t stop your precious pup from growing older, but it can help keep your dog’s mind active and keep some age-related diseases at bay. At the same time, it’s important to keep your dog’s overall condition in mind when exercising them. Older dogs will need a change of pace that befits their age. Discuss with your vet how much, and what types of, exercises are appropriate for your older dog.
Deepens Your Bond
If you play together, you stay together! Exercising your dog is an activity that you both share – whether you’re taking them out on a walk or engaging them in games like fetch. The more time you and your dog spend together, the stronger your bond becomes. This bond is one of the most rewarding parts of being a pet owner.
Age-appropriate exercise ensures that your dog’s joints stay healthy. A healthy weight prevents excess pressure on your dog’s joints, and regular exercise keeps the joints lubricated, and the muscles around those joints well-developed. It’s important to adjust your dog’s exercises with their overall health status, however. For instance, a dog with hip dysplasia probably shouldn’t go on too many – or prolonged – jogs, but swimming is a great alternative. As always, whatever exercise you embark on with your dog, keep their safety in mind.
Provides a Purpose
Dogs are unique because they developed alongside humans. Our ancestors bred their ancestors to help us with our labor – whether through hunting or herding. This means your dog has deep-seated instincts that have been passed down from generation to generation, and they need to fulfill them! While your fox terrier isn’t going hunting anytime soon, providing your pup with opportunities to exercise helps them feel fulfilled.
Socialization OpportunitiesSocializing your dog is important. Like humans, socialization among peers at an early age can help your dog develop social skills. If you take your dog out to a dog park, they’ll not be able to get some exercise, but will learn how to engage with other dogs as well. Remember that exercising your dog brings a holistic set of benefits, so why not start with some fun exercises for your dog today?