Happy New Year! This is the time of year that people decide to make changes to their lifestyle. Since January is “Walk Your Pet” month, the Central California SPCA is giving you some tips on getting you and your pet’s heart pumping and blood flowing.
Here are a few tips to make your daily exercise fun and exciting for both you and your pet.
1. Multiple short walks.
Taking multiple short walks with your dog several times a day is great for young, old or physically challenged dogs. Taking a quick walk down the block to allow your dog to relieve themselves is not adequate enough to maintain good health for your pet.
2. Tone your abs while your dog plays fetch.
How to: Grab your pet’s favorite fetch toy and get down on the floor in sit-up position. Hold the toy as you do a sit-up, and pretend to toss it as you reach the top. Fido will chase after it, only to realize you still have his toy. Do another sit-up, and pretend to toss the toy again. Try to get in as many reps as you can until your dog stops chasing and playing along.
3. Climbing stairs can sculpt your legs and burn off your dog’s most recent meal.
How to: Leash your dog and pick a long staircase. Some longer staircases can be found at parks, bleachers at a nearby school, and apartment complexes. Go up and down the stairs with your pet by your side. To add variety or for a more challenging workout try taking steps two at a time or widen your stance so you step up in a “V,” run up the steps sideways.
4. We didn’t forget about your furry feline! You can exercise with them too.
Here’s how: Do sit-ups with a mini flashlight or laser in each hand. At the top position, tighten your ab muscles while waving the flashlight beams back and forth on the wall. The light will catch your cat’s eye and will chase them. This type of exercise will tone your tummy and get your cat active as well.
5. Sculpt your biceps while your cat jumps and stretches.
How to: Tie a light toy with a string to your dumbbells. Your cat will go crazy trying to catch the toy as you curl up and down.
While exercising don’t forget that pets can’t sweat. They pant to keep their body temperature regulated. Exercise during the coolest part of the day (early morning or evening) to make sure they don’t get overheated. Make sure to be able to have access to plenty of water for both you and your pet. If leaving your home to exercise, pack a bowl for Fido in your vehicle. Provide an ounce of water per pound of your pet.
Don’t forget to have fun! Happy exercising!