A Complete Guide To Keeping Your Dog Fit And Healthy
Want to make sure your dog stays fit and healthy? There are a number of things you need to do for your dog if you want them to remain healthy. It’s helpful to keep an eye on your dog’s health and weight.
There are a few different ways you can do this such as regular vet visits and keeping an eye out for any issues. Dogs also need a substantial amount of exercise in order to stay at an optimum weight. There are a number of different ways to keep your dog active. Read on to discover our complete guide to keeping your dog fit and healthy.
Obviously one of the best things you can do to keep your dog fit is to take them on regular walks. Make sure you are walking them for the correct amount of time based on their breed, age and size. Most dogs need at least one long walk a day.
Some of the more energetic breeds needs at least two long walks a day. Walks are crucial for dogs so that they can stretch their legs, burn off some energy and keep their mind active. If your dog is getting a bit overweight try and increase the time you walk them for on a daily basis.
Playing with toys
Playing with toys is another fantastic way of keeping your dog active. They can get rid of quite a lot of energy simply by messing around with their favourite toy.
Playing tug of war and retrieval games with your dog is a good way to tire them out. If your dog loves to fetch a ball you can play this at home in your garden, around your house or out on walks.
Playing with other dogs
If your dog enjoys playing with other dogs then this is a fantastic way of keeping them agile and active. After just five or ten minute of playtime with another dog can leave your dog feeling absolutely shattered.
Try and find a ‘play buddy’ that your dog enjoys playing with and meeting up with them and their owner on a regular basis. Both your dogs will benefit from the high intensity exercise. You could also consider getting a second dog that your dog will enjoy playing with.
If your dog has joint problems or can’t cope with high intensity exercise then swimming is the perfect activity. Swimming is a low impact activity that is excellent for keeping fit. Canine hydrotherapy is extremely popular at the moment because it has so many benefits. It can help with things such as weight loss, injury rehabilitation, circulation, muscle strength and improving mobility.
Take your dog down to your local canine hydrotherapy centre or if they are a confident swimmer simply take them to a dog friendly lake or beach where they can swim in the sea.
One of the best ways to keep your dog active is to get them involved with a dog sport. These activities suit some dog breeds more than others. Find a sport that your dog enjoys and take them to classes on a regular basis.
Some of the most popular canine sports include Agility, Flyball and cani X. If you have some spare time you could consider volunteering for a local search and rescue team. You will have to give up a lot of time to train your dog but it’s a great activity for both you and your dog.
Time in the garden
If you have an enclosed garden then letting your dog play and run around outside will help to keep them active. Let your dog out in the garden at regular intervals throughout the day. You can also go outside and play games with them such as hide and seek, fetch, tug of war and recall games.
Weigh your dog
Weigh your dog on a regular basis so that you can keep an eye on their weight. Sometimes it can be difficult to notice weight changes just by looking at your dog. You should be able to feel your dog’s ribs but not see them.
Check to see if their stomach is tucked up behind their ribcage. If your dog is a around about the right weight they should have an hourglass figure. Click here for more details
Regular vet checks
One way of keeping an eye on your dog’s health is to take them to the vet for regular check ups. The vet will give them a general health check, keep a record of their weight and let you know if there are any issues.
Take your dog to the vet as soon as an issue occurs
It is cruel to leave your dog to suffer for longer than necessary if they are ill or have an injury. Don’t delay taking your dog to the vet when they have a problem. Noticing when there is something wrong with your dog and getting them the treatment they need will help them to stay healthy.
Make sure your dog’s vaccinations are up to date to protect them from illness and disease. You should also get give your dog a flea treatment and worming tablets on a regular basis to keep them parasite free.
A good diet
A good diet is also an essential part of keeping your dog healthy. Choose a high quality, complete dog food that will provide your dog with all the nutrients they require. Click here to see our complete dog food buying guide. It’s crucial that you feed your dog the correct amount and follow the manufacturer's instructions carefully.
We all love to treat our dogs. It sometimes almost impossible to resist their adorable puppy dog eyes. However, no matter how much you want to, you need to make sure you don’t feed your dog too many treats.
Some dog treats can be very high in fat and carbohydrates, if possible get some healthy treats for your dog to enjoy. Keep an eye on how many members of the family are giving your dog treats as you could be giving them too much without realising it.
Give your dog regular health checks
It’s a good idea to check your dog on a regular basis. Feel their entire body for any lumps and bumps. Check their eyes are clear and healthy, their ears are clean and free from infection and their teeth are clean and and not causing any discomfort.