There are many ways to keep yourself moving when it gets cold outside, but there are few places that will let you take your dog. Getting your best pal the exercise he or she needs is important for a healthy dog, so look for new and innovated ways to keep up the workout. Use one or many of these ideas and you’ll both soon be ready for a relaxing afternoon snowy day nap.
Run the Stairs
Move up and down the stairs with your dog. Encourage him or her to come with you, or throw a toy to be chased. This workout moves muscles on both of you that are not normally used on an ordinary walk. Run up the stairs with the dog, then throw a toy down the stairs. Do this up-and-down activity for a few rounds, and before you know it, your dog will have spent energy.
Create an Obstacle Course
Find different ideas for an at-home obstacle course for the dog. Set up cushions, tubes, hula hoops, or other objects to challenge the dog. Let the dog move through the obstacle course while you encourage him or her. Run with the dog and include a new trick to exercise both your minds and bodies.
Play a simple game of fetch with the dog, but get up and include keep-away sessionsto move your own muscles. This is a great warm up for the stairs idea, but it also stands alone. The dog will move after the toy, and you’ll stretch muscles that have grown bored from the indoor isolation.
Look for an Outing
There are a list of places that allow dogs in the neighborhood, so take the dog to an enclosed area for a stroll. Go to a local pet store, as most allow dogs. Many hardware stores, especially chains, allow dogs, so call ahead and find out if your local store participates. Walk with the dog, check out dog products, or get ideas for your next big project while you and your dog both get some much-needed exercise.
Consider a Treadmill
If you have a treadmill, you’re probably using it more during the winter months. Slowly get the dog to do the same. Place the dog near the treadmill and coax him onto it with treats. He must get used to it on his own if he is to use it. When he is comfortable on it, turn it on the lowest setting, continuing to use treats to convince him to walk. When he is comfortable on the lowest setting, turn it up to provide a bigger challenge. Never tie a dog to a treadmill.