Exercise can make a huge difference in your pet's health and well being. With pet obesity at an all time high, exercise is more important than ever, along with a well-balanced diet. A study on canine obesity last year stated that 60% of pets were classified as overweight or obese. If your pet is overweight, you will also want to consider a restricted calorie diet and portion control for meals. Excerise is extremely important as many dogs and cats do not get nearly enough.
Some great exercise options with dogs are walking or jogging with them, playing fetch, obstacle courses, hide and seek and swimming. Cats can be a little trickier but usually it's just a matter of figuring out what interests them. Most cats really love chasing a light from a laser pointer or flashlight. There are lots of great toys for them as well such as balls, toys with bells, catnip bubbles, catnip toys and feather toys that you can tease them a little with and have them chase around. Cats are great hunters as well so any toys that make them feel that thrill of the chase are great.
Just like with us, always start off a new exercise routine slowly. This is especially important if you plan to take your dog for long walks or jogs. If you are not sure if your pet is up for the challenge, be sure to have a veterinarian assess their overall health. If you try all of this and you still aren't able to get the weight off, a veterinarian can run blood-work and other tests to determine if there is an underlying problem that is causing the weight gain.
Helping your pet get the exercise they need not only will help them life a happier healthier lifestyle, but will also increase the bond between you and your pet.