Summer is here, and there is still time to head outside and work off that winter weight. Working out with a buddy is always better, so why not involve your furry friend in your exercise routine? These five ways to exercise with your dog will ensure that both you and your pup are in peak condition by the end of summer.
After those long winter months, it’s finally time to take your exercise routine back outside. Grab your furry friend and head over to a local park or forest preserve and embark on an invigorating hike. Many state and national parks are dog-friendly, as long as your pup is well-behaved and kept on a leash. Be sure to carry enough water for both you and your pet when you set out for a hike.
Walking or running
One of the easiest ways to exercise with your dog is to grab the leash and head out for a walk. This can be as simple as taking a brief stroll around your neighborhood or heading out to the dog park for a longer walk. If you have an extremely energetic or fit pup, consider taking your walk to the next level and going for a light jog instead.
If your dog is so full of energy that you have trouble keeping up with them during runs, try going for a bike ride instead. When you’re biking, you’ll get in some great cardio and exercise your leg muscles while your dog runs as fast as they please.
For older pets and for people looking for a less strenuous activity, try going for a relaxing swim. Exercising in water is easier on joints, yet it provides enough resistance to effectively work your muscles. You and your pooch can spend the day swimming along the shores of a pet-friendly lake, and some pools even host doggy days to help pups beat the heat.
Water-loving dogs may also enjoy accompanying you on a paddle boarding adventure. Stand-up paddle boarding is a great cardio exercise that works your arm muscles and helps you practice balance and core strength. Your dog can sit at the front of the paddle board and serve as your skipper during your next paddle boarding excursion.
If you’re a dog owner who’s ever had to wrestle a shoe away from your pooch, you probably already know that dogs love playing tug-of-war. You may not know, however, that tug-of-war is also a fantastic form of exercise for both you and your dog. Playing tug-of-war will help you work your upper body muscles, and it’s especially great for larger dogs. Don’t count out the little guys, though. Smaller pups can be deceptively strong, and they’ll enjoy this game just as much as big dogs.