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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Exercise for Dogs

Affordable Pet HealthCare Insurance - Your Pets Deserve it

by Dr. Jean Hofve, Veterinarian Advisor
 
Exercise for Dogs

Big dogs make great hiking companions, especially here in rugged Colorado, where we've joked for years about the Labrador Retriever being the "state dog." Most medium-sized and large dogs seem able to handle all kinds of weather. But it's easy to let a smaller dog become a couch potato, going out only to answer the call of nature and hurrying right back in. They're not built for long treks, and they can disappear completely in a foot or two of snow!

The first step with any dog is to make sure you have the right collar or harness. Studies have shown that excessive pressure from a neck collar can damage a dog's trachea (windpipe), so a walking harness may be a better choice for dogs that pull. Small dogs do exceptionally well with supportive harnesses such as the 3-in-1 Vest Harness that also doubles as a secure seat belt for car travels.

Of course, a good leash that's sturdy and easy to handle is always a good investment! A Planet Dog Hemp Leashor a Ruff Wear Flat Out Leash are good options to get out and get moving with your dog.

Don't forget to prepare for walking in the dark. The Nite Ize SpotLit L.E.D. Pet Flashlight, Ruff Wear Beacon Safety Light, and the PupLight Dog Collar Safety Light are designed to increase your dog's visibility to cars to increase the safety of night time walks.

If it's icy outside, or if your dog has furry paws that snow can pack into, consider canine footwear to protect those tender toes. Pawz Biodegradable Natural Dog Boots are an easy choice for everyday outings.

When you can't get out for a walk, there are many fun, interactive toys that will keep your dog entertained and moving, like the West Paw Design Zogoflex Jive, the Babble Ball Interactive Toy, and IncrediBubbles.