Maintaining a fit and healthy lifestyle through physical exercise is crucial for many people, and especially so for their pets. If you own a cat or a dog, then you’ll know how important their health is. After all, our four legged friends are members of our family and so making sure they are fit and healthy is crucial for them to live the best life possible. Sadly, obesity is an epidemic which has reached epic proportions over the last decade or so, with more people currently classed as obese, or morbidly obese, than ever before.
Obesity can affect your quality of life, it leaves you susceptible to all manner of ailments and health issues. It turns out however, that it isn’t just us humans who are struggling with our weight. So too are our four-legged friends.
Many dogs and cats are also getting heavier and obesity in animals can be very serious and can lead to a whole host of health issues. Across the pond, 52.5 percent of dogs in the US are overweight or morbidly obese which shows that something has to change. For cats the number is even higher, with 59 percent in the US being classed as obese or overweight.
The good news when it comes to obesity is the fact that it can easily be undone with diet and exercise, and the same applies to your cats and dogs.
If you and your furry friend are interested in maintaining a healthy lifestyle, here’s a look at six fun ways to exercise with your cat and dog.
Go for a swim
Yes, you did read that right, we are indeed recommending that you go for a swim with your dog if the pair of you are looking to lose weight, providing you do so safely of course.
Swimming is a great cardiovascular workout that is great for the heart and great for weight loss. As an added bonus, it is also a low-impact form of exercise that is great for the joints. Obesity in owners and their dogs, can put pressure on the joints which is why joint issues such as arthritis are more common in people and animals that are overweight.
Providing you find a safe and suitable location, swimming with your dog is actually a whole lot of fun and is a great way to lose weight.
Go play ball
Let’s face it, if there’s one thing that dogs love to do, it’s play ball. This is very fortunate when it comes to losing weight because playing ball is a great form of exercise.
If you want your canine companion to shed those pounds, head to the nearest park or playing field with their favourite ball, throw it as far as you can over and over, and have them bring it back to you until they have used up a lot of their energy.
To help you get some weight off too, you might want to incorporate some light cardio in there too, perhaps by running around the field every so often.
Go for a walk
Perhaps the easiest and most common way for dogs and their owners to lose weight and get some exercise in is to go for a walk.
Dogs love going on walks, and walking is a fantastic form of cardio that will burn calories and contribute towards weight loss and aerobic fitness. As an added bonus, dog walking is also fairly low impact so it is much better on the joints than running.
Whether you’re going on a walk around the block, your local park, the beach, the countryside, or a hiking trail up in the mountains, walking is a great way for dog and owner to get fit together.
Your cat is a natural born hunter and they will retain their natural hunting instincts throughout their life. A great way of indulging their inner predator is to buy a small stuffed animal toy, usually attached to a piece of string and then play hide and seek with them. By wriggling the string you can imitate the movements of its prey and this will stimulate your furry feline in to charging at it and taking it down. This is a great exercise as it helps your cat to burn calories, use up their energy and exercise their joints. It’s also lots of fun!
A cat tower is a great way of introducing exercise to your furry feline by allowing them to play, dangle, pounce and scale. These exercises will be a fun way for your cat to burn calories and use up plenty of energy!
The internet is a great source of information but not all of it is helpful or accurate. If you have concerns about your cat’s weight you should consult your vet who will be able to offer solutions.
Hopefully this article covering cats and dogs exercise has been helpful. At Country Boarding for Cats and Dogs we understand the importance of ensuring your cat and dog lives a healthy and happy life. We have many years of experience providing a friendly and professional dog walking service, cattery and dog boarding services for the Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire regions. Our friendly team will also happily collect in and around Hitchin, Letchworth, Baldock and Royston. Call us today and our team will be happy to help you.