Let’s face it—it’s already hard enough to stay inspired to keep ourselves active during the winter. Taking our dog’s health into account can be added stress if not approached in the right way. Don’t think too hard about the things you’re not doing to stay active. Instead, take each day as it comes and start by incorporating a few light activities. Following these simple tips for exercising your dog this winter and releasing endorphins will be a mood booster for both you and your furry friend.
Indoor exercise may not be your jam, but when the weather is too unstable outside, something must be done! There are a few ways to stay active with your pup indoors. Within your apartment or home, you can exercise your dog’s senses and brain with a scavenger hunt for treats or food. This will motivate your dog to stay active in a whole new way.
If you live in an apartment building or home with stairs, take a few trips up and down them with your dog. This way, you will both increase your heart rates and get your blood pumping. A few paces up and down the hallway is always an option as well.
Just because it’s winter, that doesn’t mean you have to stay trapped inside while keeping you and your pup active. When you’re able, venture into the great outdoors. Running is a good way to get some exercise and stay warm. If you’re uncomfortable with that, walking is just as beneficial, though it will take a bit longer to do the same amount of work.
If you have a fenced-in yard, let your dog run around for a while. Large dogs especially have a lot of energy to release. On mild days, you may also want to play fetch with your pup. Try to do so on an incline to add a bit of difficulty to your dog’s exercise activities. Coming up with your own tricks and tips for exercising your dog this winter can help you expand on your routines and keep your mind busy.
Be mindful of weather conditions when participating in outdoor exercises with your dog. Make sure to take precautions regarding their paws. The pads are warm and may stick to ice. There are several types of paw coverings on the market—they may take some getting used to, but they are very useful.
You must also know when it’s too cold to be outside. Sometimes, the level of communication we have with our dogs is incredible, but do not rely solely on your dog to decide when it’s too cold. Check weather conditions before venturing outside. If it is unusually cold, but you must go out, try to limit the amount of time you spend outside.
If at any time your pup shows signs of soreness or injury, take it easy. Walkin’ Pets offers pet splints and reinforcing gear to keep your dog’s body healthy and stable. Don’t push them too hard, and pay close attention to indicators that tell you when your pup needs more support. Listening to your gut and easing into exercise this winter will guarantee an active and fun time for you and your dog.