Unique Ways to Workout With Your Dog

By: Jack Thomson | On: April 13, 2017
Unique Ways to Workout With Your Dog

Finding the drive to work out can be tough for many people especially if you find yourself doing the same mundane routine over and over. To keep yourself interested and motivated, it’s important to find new ways to exercise while having fun at the same time. Luckily, dog owners have an energetic companion to keep them active and committed to working out.

Canine companions, much like humans, need ample exercise to remain healthy. While many dog owners bring their pups on a daily walk, there are numerous other options to stay active. Dogs are active creatures that love to explore and play. Unique workouts provide a sense of adventure and bonding that no standard walk can provide.

Regardless of breed and size, most dogs are fully capable of keeping up with humans. In fact, dogs can keep their owners on track. There’s no better motivator to stay fit and healthy than an energetic dog. Fun alternatives provide you and your pup a new way to burn off calories for while providing exciting new stimulation. Instead of sticking to the same designated walking path, why not give these activities a try?

Kayaking

You don’t have to stick to dry land to get some exercise. Kayaking is a great activity that works out the core and arms. A single kayaking trip can burn hundreds of calories depending on the water current. For dogs, a kayaking trip is an exciting excursion that exposes them to something they’re not used to. Usually dogs will sit on top of the kayak while owners do all the work. However, dogs can also hop in and go for a rigorous swim if they’re comfortable and the water isn’t too rough.

The best type of kayak to use is a hollow model that’s designed to sit on top. Sit-in kayaks won’t provide enough room. Dogs can either sit toward the front of the kayak on a soft pad or near your feet. Either way, they should sit where they will be always in sight. It’s important to start off slow and stay in the safe shallows until the dog gets used to the ride. They should be taught to get into the kayak on their own and given a treat when they do it correctly for positive reinforcement.  Before long, the pup will love being out on the water.

Rollerblading and Biking

If your dog is always full of energy on your daily walks, you may want to switch to biking or rollerblading. Typically, energetic dogs are fully capable and ready to go for a run. Whether you’re cycling or rollerblading, you will personally experience an intense leg and core workout and your dog will burn calories while running alongside with you. . These activities also increase your heart rate to and burn off fat. With a dog by your side, you can push yourself harder than you might if you were alone.

Keeping your dog safe while working out together should always be a top priority. Dogs should always stay on their leash. This ensures they keep up and stay out of trouble. Biking or rollerblading with a dog can actually teach the dog to stay by your side. If you’re wary about the dog taking off after a critter and throwing you off the bike, you can invest in a springer lead. This device attaches to the bike frame and provides a bit of slack. The design absorbs shock so that it doesn’t throw you off your cycling game. When it comes to rollerblading, you’ll want to keep an eye on your pooch and be ready to slow down. It’s good to have a few rollerblading skills and a well-trained dog prior to heading out to ensure that you don’t end up falling and get injured.

Cross-Country Skiing

Like rollerblading, cross-country skiing is a great way to explore and exercise with speed. Snow is a great stimulus for dogs. Some breeds are designed to withstand the rigors of snow, while others will enjoy the cool weather, they may need some extra protection. Snow coats and booties will keep them warm and prevent frostbite.

Cross-country skiing is an excellent full-body workout. Everything from your core to your legs will experience the benefit. Furthermore, the activity is good for the joints. It’s considered a low-impact activity, making it ideal for people of all ages. When a dog is thrown into the mix, the activity becomes a game of exploration and fun. Dogs will enjoy the speed and fresh air while also receiving a great workout. It’s important to prepare the dog with ample protection and monitor its condition throughout the run to ensure that they aren’t experiencing hypothermia.

Scent Tracking in the Woods

Dogs have an exceptional sense of smell. While some breeds are better at tracking scents than others, all dogs have an innate sense of smell that goes beyond the abilities of humans. Scent tracking in a natural location like the woods will exercise your dog’s body and mind. Many competitive activities are available for participation. Scent trails are created beforehand, leading to a hidden object. Dogs must pick up the aged trail and find the hidden object. Alternatively, treats and familiar items can be buried or hidden to create a fun challenge.

In a wooded area, dogs will have to lead their owners through obstacles, hills, and rough terrain. In terms of exercise, the activity is very similar to that of a nature hike. The activity can burn hundreds of calories depending on the terrain. It’s important to keep the dog leashed. Without a bit of restraint, dogs can take off to follow the scent trail, leaving owners behind in the dust. Keeping them leashed will ensure that they pace themselves while still guiding you to the end. It’s also good to bring water for hydration and a treat to reward the pup for finding the final prize.

With a lovable pooch in tow, your workouts will be fun and rewarding. The unique activities are also a joy for your dog. Instead of following the same beaten walking trail, your dog will be exposed to new and exciting things. They can stay active and receive all the exercise they need. Activities like kayaking and biking with a dog will also keep you motivated and accountable. By regularly participating in these unique ways to work out with your dog, you’ll both quickly see the benefits of leading an active and healthy lifestyle.

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