It’s been known for a long time that a dog is a man’s best friend. They are loyal, and they bring joy to everyone’s life, and in return, the owners try to take care of them in the best way they can. And they are not alone with it – websites like Petplace, many manuals or even TV shows are there to help them every step of the way.
Apart from feeding them, giving them a place to sleep and feel warm, and loving them, people also take care of their physical and mental health by providing them with exercise. However, not many realize that exercising with your dog can bring many benefits not only to him but to you as well.
You might ask – what benefits? Well, you just have to keep reading if you want to find out.
1. He Motivates You
Studies conducted by researchers from Purdue University showed that when the owners got an email that reminded them of health benefits that dog’s regular exercising brings, they increased the time they spend walking them from 10 minutes to approximately 80 minutes per week. That’s a huge change. When they were asked about the reason, they answered that it wasn’t because of the benefits it brings to their health, but to their dog’s. Other studies have shown that people who exercise with their dogs are more likely to stick to a fitness plan.
2. It Keeps Both Of You In Shape
Just as humans, dogs are also exposed to obesity, and other diseases that come with it, such as diabetes or respiratory problems. Studies have shown that dogs that exercise regularly live longer and healthier lives. Exercising also prevents potential problems with behaviour. Dogs who can’t spend their energy working out are more likely to chew on things or tear up objects. It also can result in unwanted barking and even aggression – a dog which exercises is a calm dog.
The same goes for humans. People who exercise regularly are not only in better shape physically, but also mentally. It’s a great way to let out the frustration and stress that is building up in your body during work hours or school. Working out is an excellent way to get rid of anxiety – both for you and your dog.
3. It is a Great Way of Bonding
Even though dogs are loving and loyal by nature, exercising together can make the bond between you and him even stronger. And in some cases, it can increase obedience. All you need is around 30 minutes every day of vigorous exercise.
4. It Is Free
Dogs don’t need expensive toys. They will be happy with a stick, that you found somewhere laying around, or with an empty plastic bottle. It doesn’t matter what you throw – your dog will still be happy to run after it, and get it back to you. It’s a great way of spending money on the gym membership that you haven’t used in ages, but are still paying for it. Or those Zumba classes you have a carnet for but you don’t attend, because there is always something more important to do.
5. He Is a Great Workout Buddy
In contrary to some humans, your dog makes the perfect workout buddies. The first reason is that he can’t just call you and tell you that he can’t make it today – after all, he is almost always where you are.
The second reason is that you won’t hear him complaining – just an occasional whimper maybe when he will be really tired. Instead of giving you an attitude about an upcoming workout, he will be happy about the fact that you decided to take him outside.
6. It Does Not Feel Like a Workout
Let’s be honest – going to the gym is exhausting. All those treadmills, ellipticals, exercise bikes waiting for you to break a sweat. Even thinking about it is exhausting. You can be an experienced gym lover, but at one point you will get tired anyways. Now, playing catch with your dog? Doesn’t sound like a workout, but more like playtime.
In contrary to being at the gym, you won’t be looking at the watch every 5 minutes to see if the half an hour you were supposed to run or cycle has already passed. When you are playing with your dog, you don’t even feel the time passing by.
Having a dog is lovely – everyone knows that. You have someone to lie with you on a couch on a lazy day, cheer you up when you are feeling sad, and be loyal to you for as long as he lives. But having a dog also gives you a reason to get out of bed every morning, so that both of you can get some fresh air and throw a little workout here and there.
And there are several reasons for why you should start exercising with your dog. You get to spend quality time together, and at the same time, it keeps both of you fit and healthy. It’s a win-win situation, isn’t it?