Why is Exercise So Important for Dogs?
Did you know your daily dog walk offers benefits beyond just keeping your pup in shape? Exercising is an opportunity to strengthen your bond and can ultimately lead to a happier, healthier, and better-behaved dog.
Check out these four incredible benefits of your daily dog walk!
Maintaining physical fitness
One of the most obvious benefits of exercising your dog is that it helps maintain their fitness. Up to 30% of dogs in North America are obese, so ensuring your dog has the chance to work off some calories each day will help them maintain a healthy weight and reduce their risk for diseases linked to obesity.
Regular exercise also helps dogs maintain muscle tone, which is especially crucial for older dogs and those with arthritis. Maintaining muscle tone will help alleviate the strain on your dog’s joints and keep them limber into old age. Always be mindful of your dog’s comfort when exercising, but know that gentle walks, swimming, and other low-impact exercise are healthy and beneficial.
It’s an opportunity for socialization
Socializing your dog is the process of exposing them to new environments so they can interact with a range of sights, sounds, smells, people, and creatures. Supporting your dog through this range of diverse experiences will help them gain confidence and conduct themselves calmly in any situation. A daily walk or trip to the dog park is an excellent opportunity to socialize your dog with new pets, people, and locations while getting some exercise!
We all get a little restless when we’re bored; the same goes for dogs. This restless energy can manifest in unwanted behaviours such as chewing and barking. Trips outside allow your dog to explore new environments, check out interesting smells, and meet new people and pets, all of which stimulate their brain while burning off their excess energy.
If you leave your dog home alone while you’re at work, taking them for a morning walk may help put them at ease while you’re away.
Exercise is a bonding activity
Shared activities are a great way to bond with your dog, ultimately making you both happier. Spending time out in the world and confronting different scenarios with you will help your dog trust you more deeply. As a result, they’re more likely to be obedient and feel confident in unfamiliar situations.
To take the bonding experience up a notch, incorporate basic obedience and leash training into your daily walk. Dogs love to have a job, and they’ll undoubtedly find it rewarding to show off their new skills. Take some Functional Crunchy Biscuits with you to reward your dog for their good behaviour!
The Bottom Line
As the days grow shorter, colder, and wetter, it may be tempting to cut back on time spent outdoors with your dog, but don’t overlook the myriad benefits of daily exercise. Too much time cooped up indoors is bound to make anyone stir-crazy. If it’s too yucky to visit the dog park, engage your dog in indoor playtime with their favourite toys. You’re sure to notice a difference in their behaviour if you do!