Most people recognize that daily activity is important to the physical wellbeing of a dog, the amount they receive everyday may have a significant effect on their behavior. Dogs that do not have a good exercise to work off their energy may build up some problematic behaviors such as chewing, digging at furnitures, excessive barking and even aggression issues. These build-up energy and stress within your dog will determine how they communicate with you and their environment.
Different breeds have varying exercise requirements, taking your dog for a walk around the block is a good way to start, and it may be sufficient for breeds with lower exercise requirements. However, as most dogs were originally bred for hunting, guarding and herding, the current lifestyle of just sleeping, eating and wandering around the house often results in weight problems and loss of muscle mass. For larger dog breeds, it can be proved to be significantly harmful to the joints, and therefor shortening their lifespan.
In situations that you’re not able to have activities with your dog outdoors, here are some tips on how you can work out your dog’s body and mind indoors:
- Playing fetch
The good old fashion game of playing fetch with your dog is one of the easiest ways you can keep your dog engaged and active. You may switch in between their favorite toys to keep them on their toes.
Walking on treadmill are one of the best ways to provide your dog some healthy indoor exercises. Start off slow with the treadmill to allow them to get comfortable with the sight and sound of the treadmill. Once your dog is adjusted, you may gradually increase the speed to provide a more challenging workout.
- Running up and down stairs
Making use of the stairs by running up and down will engage different muscles, which is an additional challenge for a dog’s workout. With the elevation, your dog would be exhausted after a few rounds of running up and down the stairs. But do keep in mind that dogs with shorter legs and longer backs may be more challenging for them, so do not push them too hard on this exercise, it is as tiring for them as it is for us.
- Obstacle course
With the items and materials at home, you can use some creativity and repurpose them to set up obstacle course for your dog. Help your dog to work through the different obstacles and reward him along the way, this game will help to stimulate your dog physically and mentally.
- Working for treats
Hiding your dog’s favorite treats around the house will help to engage your dog physically as they move around the house tracking down his prized treats. It could also encourage to depend more on their sense of smell too. Another way you can challenge them physically and mentally is to give them some toys dispensing toys.