Photo: Michael Vistia
Whether you have two or four legs, exercise in combination with a healthful diet is good for your body, mind and spirit. Indeed, the togetherness wrought by exercise demonstrates the depths of your affection, which makes your pooch very happy.
Exercise also helps focus your dog's energy. After a four-year and 50-pound hiatus, Billy's dog Gabriel inspired him to get off the couch and lose the excess weight.
Choose activities that are appropriate for humans and canines. Be honest and realistic when you assess everyone's capabilities. Before beginning any exercise or rigorous activity, consult with your dog's veterinarian and your medical doctor.
For your dog, consider these factors: age, breed, physical characteristics, personality, health, stamina, preferences and obedience skills. Verify that Fido's vaccinations and parasite preventatives are current. Many dogs cannot jog or engage in rigorous activity until they are about 18 months old, so check with your doctor before you start working out. As you play or exercise, continually observe your dog for signs of fatigue or injury. Never push your dog to his physical limits. You are the only thing between Fido and overexertion.
Safety is important too. Here are some additional factors to keep in mind while you exercise with your pooch:
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Published on September 07, 2009