Dog Exercise Program | Update

A border collie running in the water as part of an exercise program for dogs

Our canine companions were born to work and they love their jobs. Whether herding, hunting, retrieving or protecting, your dog is at his best, actually doing something worthwhile. This is especially true for senior pets.

However over the years, we’ve given our dogs another job: couch potato companion!!

Before we welcomed the canines into our lives and lifestyles, dogs spent hours foraging for food, playing and patrolling their turf. It kept their brains engaged. It honed their senses and instincts. Enter the human factor. We’ve adopted these loyal beings, invited them to sit at the table. We’ve made their lives so much easier. They don’t have to hunt and scrounge to find food or fresh, clean water, they are kept warm and healthy and are loved. Unquestionably, most dogs have it made in our pet-loving households. But we have created a new problem: Lazy Lounge Around Dog.

Just as exercise is necessary for our good health, it is extremely important for a dog’s mental, emotional and physical health. Lack of routine exercise can lead to obesity, joint and muscle problems and behavior issues. When you are at the gym, your dog isn’t doing curls or taking a lap. He’s taking a nap. He’s lounging on a soft cushy bed just waiting for you to come home with dinner.

You might have a lazy lounge around dog if he/she does any of the following:
• Jumping up on you or knocking over furniture
• Excessive barking at seemingly nothing.
• Investigative habits like garbage surfing
• Hyperactivity
• Destructive chewing…your new expensive shoes–not the chew toy.

If you mentally checked even one of the traits, and have tried other tactics, it could be time to get off the couch and moving.

Start with a simple routine walk around the neighborhood or even a game of fetch for 20 minutes in the back yard. A leash is an inexpensive item and sticks are free in your own yard.

If you want more of a tailored approach, check out Amazon for pet toys. They have something for every breed, type and fitness level by several well-respected pet toy and treat companies. Type in a simple search for dog exercise toys and you will find companies like Outward Hound, Nerf Dog, Our Pets and Squishy Face Studio, just to name a few, with a variety of toys to fit every budget.

Many companies specializes in treat and teaser toys. One of the popular items is the Tail Teaser—a long pole with two furry, squeaky toys attached. It is durable and fun for even the toughest toy tugger. Nerf Dog has the ever-popular Tennis Ball Stomper that launches a squeaky tennis ball up in the air. For those dreaming of agility trials, this toy is a good place to start. Our Pets features an Interactive IQ Treat Ball, if keeping the mental stamina in your dog is a top priority and Squishy Face Studio offers a braided fleece Lure Tug Toy, which is safe alternative to traditional rope toys.

What is good for our health translates well with our furry friends. Fresh air, sunshine, cardio and a little mental work does work wonders. You’ll see instant results. Your pup will be calmer, have more confidence and maintain an agile, healthy body. You don’t need a personal trainer or a rocket scientist to get a plan worked up. So what are you waiting on? Get out there!


Happy kids and flexible dogs, exercise and being outdoors are the key.