With COVID-19 shutting down cities around the world, many of us are left staying home for extended periods. It can be difficult for some of us to give ourselves or our pets the exercise we all need.
If you’re looking for ideas on how to exercise your dog, then you’re in luck. Today we take a look at how to exercise with your dog indoors.
How to Exercise with Your Dog Indoors
There are several activities you can share with your dog to help keep you both in shape. Even if you live in a crowded city and can’t go out due to a shelter-in-place order, you can both stay fit and active.
Take a look at the activities you can share with your dog below.
Hit the Stairs
Stairs are a great way to exercise yourself, and your dog can benefit from them as well. Having your dog run up and down a long flight of stairs will get their heart going.
Just remember that stairs aren’t great for every dog. Some breeds with hip problems or older dogs, in general, will probably want to avoid the stairs.
Make an Obstacle Course
Use what you have to make an obstacle course for your dog. Set up chairs, tables, or even pillars to give your dog a fun challenge. Hula hoops or other toys can be a significant obstacle as well.
Play Hide and Seek with Treats
This game can be a favorite for many dogs. Hide a handful of treats around the room without your dog seeing. Then let them into the room and have them sniff out their locations. Make sure you change up the locations, so your dog is actually working and not just memorizing where you place them.
Play Hide and Seek Yourself
A fun alternative to hiding treats is to hide yourself. Tell your dog to sit in one room and run into the other room to hide. Jump under some covers, or hide behind the door. Use whatever you have, and your dog is sure to have a blast seeking you.
If you have another person with you, you both can play keep-away with your dog. Of course, you’ll want to keep it interesting for your dog, so be sure to let them win once in a while.
If you have a long hallway, you’ll likely be able to throw a toy or ball and have your dog return it. Fetch can be a great way to play with your dog and an excellent way to reward them for listening to you.
Take a Walk
If you live in a suburban or urban area, you can likely still go out for walks. Just make sure to wash your dog’s paws after coming home.
Even if you live in an apartment, you may be able to run your dog on a treadmill. There are even treadmills especially meant for dogs. Just remember to go slowly because not every dog will enjoy using a treadmill.
Tug of War
Tug of war is a game that works your dog out, but you can also wear yourself down a bit, depending on the size of your dog. It’s a great game to help bond with your dog. Just be sure not to let your dog get overly aggressive while playing. If your dog shows signs that they are getting too wound up, step up as the leader of the home and cool it down.
Obedience training is a great way to pass the time and give your dog some stimulation. While your dog should already have some skills, you can work on some more exotic tricks like shutting off the lights or checking what’s in the fridge.
The best part about obedience training is that you don’t have to teach “useful” skills. You can have fun and think of exciting things to do. Just make sure you have lots of treats on hand to reward your dog.
Just because your dog isn’t playing Sudoku doesn’t mean they don’t like a challenge! Most dogs crave mental stimulation. A puzzle is just right to help your dog get that creative energy out.
You can get your dog a treat puzzle for them to solve. These toys dispense treats once your dog figures out the secret of how to open it. It’s just right to give your dog some stimulation.
Swap Out Some Toys
If your dog has amassed an extensive collection of toys, you should be hiding some of them. Many trainers recommend removing your dog’s access to too many toys because they can quickly become overwhelmed or bored with so many choices.
Use this time as an opportunity to hide some toys and reintroduce them back at a later time. It will make your dog excited because they are getting “new” toys. Just make sure that when you give them some new toys, you sneak some of their other toys out to give back at a later time.
Why Exercise with Your Dog
There are plenty of reasons why your dog needs exercise. These include:
- Reduction in destructive behaviors – An active mind and body is the best way to reduce harmful behaviors. Bored dogs are going to chew, bark and whine. Getting them active can help reduce these behaviors.
- Muscle gain – A dog who’s working out is going to be stronger. Obviously, you don’t want your dog to get too bulky, but a proper build will keep your dog healthier for longer.
- Burning fat – An inactive dog is going to put on weight quickly. Help your dog live their best life by exercising them.
A bit of exercise is good for you and your dog. Work with each other to get active today.