The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention warns that 53% of dogs in the US are either overweight or obese. Yes; there’s a pretty good chance that your dog might already be facing weight problems as you read this article. So what can you do to prevent it? Simple really. Start by walking your dog regularly. Besides being an excellent way of keeping your best friend fit, walking is also great exercise for you.
Walking Mentally Stimulates Your Dog
Dogs need to explore the world to learn new things and develop their abilities. When taking your dog out for a long walk, he’ll get the chance to stop, sniff around and check out the environment. A dog that spends all day inside the house or locked in the yard won’t get the same mental stimulation as he would by walking and interacting with strangers and other dogs.
Regular Walking Prevents Degenerative Joint Diseases
Depending on the breed, age and health condition, a dog’s need for exercise might vary from thirty minutes to two hours a day. You can handle most of it close to your home, but there’s no substitute for a good long walk. Dogs are meant to work for a living, and it’s within their nature to run around and make a physical effort to keep up their muscle tone.
Not only will you be looking out for the health of your four-legged pal, but you’ll also make significant savings on vet’s bills. And if you’re not used to regular exercise, then get your sneakers out of the closet, slip in some powerstep insoles, and take advantage of the opportunity to get in shape yourself.
Long Walks Are Golden Moments to Bond
Spending quality time with your pet is key towards creating a strong bond. And what better way to share some time with your dog than a long entertaining walk? Dogs associate walking and being outside with rewards, which in turn makes them more eager to please. Add some motivating games to make it even more fun, such as off-lead walking or hide and seek.
Walks Make Good Training Sessions
You can use these entertaining moments to teach your dog some new tricks, such as heel walking, sitting before crossing the road, or simply following you without the leash. Walks make good rewards when you’re using positive reinforcement as a training method, so don’t underestimate their powerful influence on your dog’s behavior.
Spending some time outdoors, relaxing and enjoying good company can work wonders for your health and wellbeing. To prevent foot pain, be sure to use appropriate footwear and a good pair of spenco insoles, to comfort your feet. And if your dog is aging, make sure you take him for regular veterinary check-ups to ensure that his paws, joints and bones are all in good condition as well.