If you’re a sports person, we know you’d love to be able to spend some quality time with your pet while enjoying some calorie-burning activities. Besides the boost of endorphins, you get when being active, you also get to bond with your puppy and get him or her to be active as well. So basically, doing sports with your dog has benefits all around: from physical to mental, to social benefits for both you and your dog. So what types of sports can you practice with your dog? Read below and find out:
One of the simplest sports activities that you can do together with your pup is jogging. They love running around and spending time with you, so one of the ways in which you can spend time together is by taking them on a run with you. You can use ahands-free leash in order to keep your dog attached to you and that way, make sure he or she is safe and everything works out.
So how exactly do you do this? Well, you don’t just pick up a leash and go running, as your dog will not understand what’s going on. You can, however, start training your dog to jog with you. Start small, by jogging for about 5-10 minutes with your dog during the walks of the day. Once they’re okay with it, you can gradually increase the running time. But, one thing to keep in mind through this training is that you need to keep watch of your dog so that he is not too tired, panting beyond exhaustion, but then again, you shouldn’t do that either. You need to always be able to give a command if needed, so make sure you’re not out of breath.
Why would you make your dog run, you might ask? Because it’s just as good for your dog as it is for you. You can build muscle mass, lose extra weight or just burn some extra calories and tire out a puppy so that they don’t end up running around your home and breaking everything.
Like running, hiking can be a very fun activity to do with your dog. Dogs are explorers by nature, so taking your puppy on a hike with you will stimulate their explorer gene and they will for sure enjoy it very much. This is especially true if you’re taking them on a course that’s new to them, something they don’t get to see on a daily basis, like when yougo on your daily walks.
However, there are a few things to keep in mind that may be different than jogging. First, ensure that your dog is allowed to hike with you on that terrain. Then, make sure you pack some essentials for your dog, just as you would for yourself: a bottle of water and a bowl for him to drink from, some treats or a bit of food to make sure he’s got enough energy for the road, as well as some toys for entertainment along the way and an appropriate leash. One that could work is either a retractable leash or, if you want to have more control, one with a bungee cord, as that one would reassure you can bring your dog back to safety whenever needed, while still letting him explore close by.
Actually, while we’re on the topic, it’s vital that you carry a leash when you’re hiking with your dog in a new environment because of several reasons:
When it comes to biking, things get a little more complicated, but not impossible. Obviously riding a bike implies more speed, but that’s usually nothing a healthy adult dog can’t handle. Biking with your dog, however, implies a bit more safety to cover than the other outdoor options. You need to ensure a proper leash for this, to make sure the leash is not so long that it gets caught in the wheels of the bike (which would not only pose a threat to your dog, but also to you). Anadjustable leash might work best for this scenario.
When it comes to the actual exercise, make sure you start slow, as we mentioned with running as well. Get ready to pedal at a very slow rate, so that your dog is walking comfortably beside you. Then, slowly but steadily increase the speed to get your dog moving more.
You might also want to include some biking cues in your dog training, to make sure your dog knows specific commands for when you’re biking with him.
All in all, it’s clear to us: if you love exercising outdoors, there are options to do that while still spending quality time with your dog. All you need to do is keep in mind their safety, as well as yours, before getting started.