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Keeping Fido Fit

Is your dog a furry, bouncing bundle of energy? Or is Fido more of a couch potato, who moves the fastest when he hears the words Snack or Treat? Proper exercise is very important to your pet’s health and well-being! While your canine pal’s exact activity needs will depend on his age, breed, weight, and health, all dogs need some exercise. Below, a Southeast Denver, CO vet discusses keeping your furry buddy fit.

Safety Guidelines

Not all exercises are suitable for every dog. For instance, brachycephalic dogs, which are those pooches with pushed-in faces, like pugs, can lose their breath very easily, and should never be overexerted. Larger dogs, and breeds that are prone to hip dysplasia, should not be encouraged to jump or stand on their hind legs. A senior pooch may be worn out after a short walk, while a younger dog could run around for hours and still not be tired … even if you feel tired just watching him! Ask your vet for specific advice.

Benefits of Exercise

Keeping Fido fit will benefit him in many ways. Proper exercise is great for him physically, of course. It will also burn off any excess energy, which may otherwise be channeled into destructive habits, like chewing and digging. Exercise is also one of the main ways to keep your pooch from becoming obese. While we admit that chubby dogs are cute, being overweight or obese is very bad for your canine friend’s health, and can increase his risks of developing many harmful medical conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, and liver trouble.

Choosing The Right Exercise

There are all sorts of fun ways to keep your furry buddy active. If you don’t like vigorous exercise, try playing fetch with Fido, or get him an automated laser pointer or ball launcher. (Note: tennis balls are dangerous to big dogs, so that suggestion doesn’t apply to large breeds.) If you like getting out and about, take your pup hiking or to a doggy park. There’s no reason you can’t have some fun with your furry pal: swimming, dancing, agility training, and jogging a few more possible choices. Just be sure to build your dog’s endurance slowly, and never push him too hard. Ask your vet for more information.

Do you have questions or concerns about Fido’s health or care? Call us, your Southeast Denver, CO animal clinic, today!

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