Winter Activities for Your Pet
Now that we’re in the thick of Winter, it’s time to remember to incorporate winter activities for your pet to keep him or her busy while avoiding that all-too-common pet laziness and weight gain. Here are some great winter activities for your pet:
Hide-and-seek – most pets love this exercise because it is so much fun. Begin by throwing your pet’s favorite treat far away enough that while he or she is busy fetching the toy, you can hide. Your pet will really get a work out trying to find you. Or, you can hide your pet’s favorite toy in a place that is challenging to find, and then have your pet find the toy.
Tag – equally as fun, combined with an effective workout, is tagging your pet and having him or her chase you, then taking your turn to chase your pet.
The Scent Game – build some type of obstacle course for your pet to go through to find his or her favorite treat or meal.
Stairs – indoor or outdoor stairs are an excellent workout. Include skipping steps, crisscrossing, and anything else that breaks up the routine and adds an extra element of surprise.
Brain-teasers – there are some great brain-teaser toys on the market, like Twist ‘N Treat and Tug-a-Jug that will keep your pet entertained while receiving a great workout.
Dog treadmills – yes, there are now treadmills specifically designed for your dog. Make sure to train your dog properly on the treadmill to avoid injuries.
Skijoring – for those pets who live in ski country, skijoring is becoming popular. This activity involves cross country skiing combined with mushing or racing. A special dog harness, and belt for you, must be used. This exercise allows your 30-pound, or more, pet to safely pull you through the snow.
There are also great classes available to help your pet with exercise and socialization, as well as sheer entertainment:
Dog Agility Classes – these classes include swimming classes, flyball, obstacle courses and many other activities that will help entertain, socialize and workout your pet. Contact your local agility club or trainer for more information.
Snuggling – and don’t forget the best activity of the day is to snuggle with your pet. After a full day of activities, it’s time for both of you to settle down with some quality time together.
Winter-time does not mean down-time. Keep your busy all year long. And, as with any exercise program, make sure your pet has been examined to make sure your pet is physically prepared for the exercise program you desire. Call NorCal Vet today, at (415) 413-7363, and let us help your keep your pet active, healthy and happy all year long.