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Fido’s Fitness Regimen

Keeping your dog active is very important to his health and well-being. Whether you have a tiny pooch, like a Chihuahua, or a big, lovable pup, like a St. Bernard, proper exercise is a crucial part of your canine buddy’s care regimen. Here, a local Columbia, MD vet discusses Fido’s exercise needs.

Customized Workouts

Your pet’s breed, weight, age, and personality should all be considered when choosing activities. Not all exercises are suitable for every pup. If you have a large pooch, like a German Shepherd, your vet may advise you not to encourage him to jump or stand on his back legs. This puts a lot of strain on your pet’s hips. For pooches that are prone to hip dysplasia, that’s a definite no-no! Brachycephalic pups, like pugs, lose their breath very easily, and should not be encouraged to overexert themselves. Do some research into your pet’s breed, and ask your vet for recommendations.

Running

Dogs can make great running buddies! You will need to build your pup’s endurance up slowly, however. Start by alternating walking and running. Keep a close eye on your pet when running. If Fido starts panting heavily or lagging behind, give him some water and let him rest.

Swimming

Weather permitting, swimming can be a great way for Fido to get his doggy workout in. This is particularly beneficial with large breeds and senior pooches. Since the water will support Fido’s weight, it’s much easier on his bones and joints.

Playing

Playing can also give your pet a great workout! Even spending just a few minutes running and jumping can help keep Fido in shape physically. If you have a furry bundle of zoom on your hands, try using automated toys, such as a mechanical ball launcher or an automatic laser pointer.

Senior Dogs

As your furry buddy ages, he’ll slow down, and will tire out much more quickly. However, older dogs do still need some activity, even if it’s just a short stroll around the block. This will help keep your pup’s bones strong, and can help prevent muscle atrophy.

Small Dogs

Little pooches need exercise, too. However, smaller breeds have to work pretty hard to cover ground on those short legs. Fido may get a good workout in just running around the house!

Please contact us, your Columbia, MD vet clinic, for all your dog’s veterinary care needs. We’re here to help!

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