Exercising your dog during the coronavirus outbreak
At a time when many people in the UK are being asked to stay home and only venture out for essential travel or supplies, it’s important to remember to look after our pets.
Dogs are intelligent animals and if they get bored this could lead to a frustrated dog which could cause destruction in the home. During the current Covid-19 crisis, your dog still needs daily exercise to keep their joints mobile and maintain their general health. However, with many of us now staying home, if you’re unable to walk your dog outside, what other way could you ensure they get much needed exercise?
We share some tips on keeping up with your pet’s exercise while on lockdown.
Use your local park
If you are able to get out of the house for the one hour of government approved exercise, use it to walk your dog. Use your local park or even just walking around the block will give your dog some much needed exercise, as well as allowing yourself to get some fresh air. Be sure to adhere to the guidelines of keeping two metres away from other walkers and only walk your dog locally.
Make your dog work for their treats
Take a few of your dog’s favourite treats and hide them around the house. This will keep your dog busy while he is sniffing out the treats, under furniture and behind doors. Treat dispensing toys can also help to keep them busy while engaging their mind.
Teaching your dog some new tricks or simply refreshing their training is a great way to engage your dog. As well as keeping them physically fit, training can also help to keep their brain active. Use treats to reward good behaviour but remember to keep them as part of their daily meal. Read our top tips on brain training your dog here.
Use the stairs
Make use of any stairs in your home, if your dog is mobile and physically able to – get them running up and down the stairs. Stand at the top of the stairs and throw your dogs favourite toy down to him, get him to pick it up and bring it to you at the top. This is a great way to tire out your pooch.
Create an obstacle course
If your dog is mobile and you have the space in your home, create an obstacle course using furniture for your dog to run around, jumping over and going under tables and chairs. Be careful not to use rooms with wooden floors as this could cause your dog to slip and fall while they are running around. Use treats each time they complete it to keep them entertained and not get bored.
Make use of outdoor space
If you have a garden or yard, make use of the outdoor space to run or walk around with your dog. If the weather is nice, you can power walk around your garden with your pooch – giving yourself some exercise as well as your dog. If your garden is big enough use the space to play fetch with your pup’s favourite toy.
Tug of war
Using rope toys, tug of war with your dog is a great way to tire them out. However, this game could bring out the predator side of your pooch, so be sure to remain in control and take breaks during the game to ensure they don’t get aggressive.
Establish a routine
To help keep your dog calm during this time, be sure to establish a routine with their exercise. If you are doing daily exercise, try and do it at the same time each day. Your dog will get used to their routine and exercising in the morning will help to keep them quiet during the day if you are working from home.