Canine Conundrums -taking your dog off the beaten track.
Why do dogs become excited when we pick up their leashes or put on our walking shoes? These actions signify getting out and about and reading the canine newspapers and magazines. Exciting stuff!
Most dogs don’t have much to look forward to in their day: Two meals, their person coming home at the end of a long day at work. Some have more – a daily walk and sometimes fun training, a treasure hunt for dinner or play with a friend who visits, is visited or met in the park; perhaps a class or group walk during the week.
Walking your dog not only gives him another activity and adds interest to his day, as he sniffs and investigates, but also gives him the exercise he needs. This assists in keeping his weight down, which will help to keep him healthy.
Excess fat increases blood pressure, can lead to heat stress, osteoarthritis and dermatitis. It is also related to cardiovascular disease and some cancers. Being overweight can cause internal organs to become squashed as well as undue stress on joints and ligaments.
Obesity is also a result of over-eating. In the case of our pets, this is usually over-feeding, so ensure your dog is receiving the correct amount of food. If you are adding gravy and dinner scraps, calculate the amount accordingly. When you train your dog, calculate how much is given as training treats. You can use some of his dinner for training.
Your dog should have a waist or hollow just behind the ribcage. You should be able to feel your dog’s ribs in the same way you can feel your own metacarpals. Your dog’s hip bones should not be evident. If you are unsure about your dog’s weight or exercise plan, ask your vet.
Long summer days are ideal for evening walks, so pick up that leash and get your furry friend out for a sniff and some exercise, but ensure you are both safe!