How to Keep Your Puppy Healthy and Active

Have you heard the old adage that says, “Move it or lose it?” It’s a common figurative phrase that basically means you better move something (typically your body) or else it will be damaged or destroyed. As humans, we need to keep our bodies moving in order to maintain our physical health and mental well-being. The same goes for pet dogs.

Dogs need to get proper exercise because it’s better for them to not be overweight. When dogs are too heavy, or obese, they can no longer participate in physical activities because they lack the speed and stamina they should have. The more they sit around, lethargically, the more apt they are to have joints that hurt, ligaments that get torn, heart problems, bad backs, trouble breathing, skin diseases and other nasty stuff. Obviously, you don’t want your dog to suffer. Therefore, regular exercise is important.

Dogs are active by nature. Their ancestors– wolves– would walk many miles a day in search of food. That urge to walk, wander, run, search and play is still in dogs. And if a dog is always cooped up in a cage, that messes with their brains. They get tired and depressed and listless and it’s not good for them or for you, the owner. Exercise, on the other hand, allows them to get out their frustrations in a healthy way, and it alleviates boredom. Yes, dogs can get bored, and no, you don’t want them to!

While dogs often can exercise on their own, as a pet owner you should take an active role in playing with them. Throw a stick or ball for them to chase, retrieve and bring to you. Pet them and make them know you appreciate them when they bring you the stick or ball. It makes the dog feel loved. You can also take daily jogs with your dog– if they can keep up with you, that’s great. Once in a while, give your dog the opportunity to swim in a pond, pool or stream for the challenge of it. As long as you’re there to rescue your dog in case they wear themselves out, they’ll be fine, and getting good exercise.

The more a dog exercises, the better off he or she will be both mentally and physically-speaking. Therefore, never hesitate to spend time with your dog engaging him or her, keeping active for health’s sake.

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