According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, 55.8% of dogs in North America are classified as overweight or obese. Obesity in pets is not a simple health concern; overweight dogs are more likely to suffer from arthritis, kidney disease, liver disease, diabetes, heart failure, high blood pressure and cancer.
To tackle this pet health crisis, FitPaws founded Canine Fitness Month, bringing awareness to the growing and preventable issue of canine obesity and inactivity. As the leaders in Canine Fitness for more than 10 years, FitPaws is passionate about shining a light on the limited amount of movement and exercise that dogs may experience at home and encouraging pet parents to change their habits and activities to help keep their dogs active and fit.
Fortunately, obesity is one of the most preventable conditions from which dogs suffer and by making small changes, you can have a major impact on the quality and longevity of your dog’s life. Getting your dog the activity they need to stay healthy is fun, rewarding, and an excellent way to bond with your pet. Here are our Top Tips for Keeping your Dog Fit and Active!
1. Longer and More Frequent Walks
This is the easiest exercise for most dogs and the extra time together in the fresh air will be rejuvenating for both of you! 45 minutes or more is ideal if you have the time, but 30 minutes will still exercise your dog and keep a fully grown dog fit.
2. Try Active Play
Active play is a great way to get your dog moving and having fun at the same time! Throw a ball, stick, or a frisbee in a safe environment to keep your dog engaged and moving!
3. Play Hide and Seek
Place your dog’s daily allowance of treats throughout the room, behind doors, under chairs, etc. to get your dog moving around the space and create an active reward.
4. Play Fitness Games
Place an unstable object or a low-level balance object like a FitPaws Balance Ramp in front of your dog’s food bowl for your dog to step on as they reach for the food to introduce balance and limb strengthening as a fun and rewarding game! You can also create a game where you put two food bowls on the ground separated by a few feet and throw treats into the first bowl to lure the dog to that bowl and then throw to the other bowl and back again to the first bowl. Pretty soon your dog is exercising without even realizing it!
5. Weather Not Cooperating? Create an Indoor Gym
If space is small or the weather isn’t cooperating, an “indoor gym” of fun activities is a flexible way to incorporate movement for your dog anywhere! It is great to integrate activities that test and train your dog’s 5 key fitness indicators; strength, balance, cardio, flexibility and mental fitness.
In celebration of National Canine Fitness Month, FitPaws has come out with a special bundle that is a great suite of products to introduce fitness to your dog. Complete with an Agility Set, a set of Mini Mango K9 FitBones, and a 14” Razzleberry Balance Disc, your dog can work on balance, agility, body awareness, confidence and so much more! This offer is a limited time offer for the month of April and available while supplies last.
6. Exercise Together
Encourage your dog to participate when you are exercising at home! When you put on a home workout, grab a toy and lure your dog over to join in!
As a leader in canine fitness for more than 10 years, FitPaws founded Canine Fitness Month to bring awareness to the growing and preventable issue of canine obesity. The registrar at National Day Calendar declared Canine Fitness Month to be every April beginning in 2017. Additionally, FitPaws is proud to sponsor a number of certification programs through North Carolina State University and the Canine Rehabilitation Institute including the Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach (CSCC), Certified Companion Animal Therapist (CCAT), Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist (CCRT) and Certified Canine Rehabilitation Veterinary Nurse (CCRVN). These certification programs provide vets, vet technicians, behaviorists, physical therapists and fitness trainers with education on our equipment and methods to create safe and effective canine fitness and physical therapy programs.