How do you keep your pooch fit during the winter when it’s too cold to go outside for a daily walk? There are lots of ways! A couple of these exercises require equipment, but most can be carried out with what you already have around your home.
If you have stairs, you can get your dog to run up and down the steps with you a few times. You’ll get a good workout, too. You can also teach your pet new tricks that involve a lot of physical activity and have him perform them again and again.
Games, such as fetch, can be turned into exercise. Playing fetch for half an hour each day will keep your dog in shape. You can play hide-and-seek as well. Hide somewhere in the house and call your pet’s name until he finds you. Or you can hide his toys and have him find them. At the beginning he might not understand what you want him to do, so show him the objects and act like you’re trying to locate them and he’ll do the same. This game might take more time but your dog will enjoy it.
If you have enough space in your home, you can set up an indoor obstacle course for your dog and keep it until the winter is over. Be creative in building the obstacle course. Use old tables, chairs, drawers, pails, and pillows. Make it fun and colorful by including toys, photos, and other items.
If you don’t mind spending on some exercise equipment, you can get a dog exercise ball and teach your pet to balance on it. Or you can buy a dog treadmill, but check first if it suits your dog’s personality. It can be expensive, too; prices range from $300 to $3000.
You don’t have to be confined to your home, though. You can take your dog to a pet daycare and tell them that you want your pooch to get at least half an hour of exercise. Or you can go to the mall and walk around there.
Should you decide to walk your dog outside, wear warm enough clothes. Consider dressing your dog, too. You can easily find coats, turtlenecks, sweaters, hoodies, jackets, and boots for canines online and in pet supply stores.
Remember, wintertime doesn’t mean that your dog’s fitness has to be put on the back burner!