Exercising your dog in tough weather conditions

July 17th, 2013

Bailey on a winter walkIf you find it hard to drag yourself out of bed to walk your dog on cold, wet and windy mornings, you are not alone. With temperatures hovering just above zero degrees at dawn, you can be forgiven for trying to sneak in a few more minutes under the covers. But as much as we would all like to stay in bed all day, duty calls, especially if your dog is eagerly awaiting a walk. Here are a few tips to make it easier for you and your pooch to venture outside:

Invest in an umbrella

Golf umbrellas are so big they can fit you, your dog and three others from getting wet. If you find it a bit tricky to navigate a leash and an umbrella while trying to scoop up your dog’s business, try a raincoat instead. Make sure it is waterproof and not just water-resistant though, otherwise you can easily become soaked.

Rug up your dog

Buy a jacket or raincoat for your dog as well – if you have to put on extra layers, your dog is probably feeling the chill too. The coat will keep your dog warm, and make the drying process a lot easier for you as only their paws will be wet, rather than their whole body. Plus they will not smell as bad afterwards, which is always a bonus.

Seek out man-made shelters

If you live in the city, maybe skip the muddy parks and make a detour down a strip of shops. There are man-made undercover shelters there and as you pass the café’s you have ample opportunities to warm up between those toasty outdoor heaters.

Exercise with your dog

An excellent way to warm up in the morning is to run or jog with your dog. It will improve your health and save you time and money on expensive gym memberships. Another advantage is that you can cover the same distance in half the time, giving you a bit more of a sleep in.

If you really can’t handle the environment outside, try the following:

Share the load

Get in contact with a neighbour who also has a dog and see if they would be interested in alternating dog walking schedules with you. This means you are only out there half the time, and your dog gets to make a new friend!

Hallway fetch

If you have a small sized dog or a long hallway at home, it could be the perfect place to play fetch where you do not even have to leave your home.

Stairs

If you live in an apartment, fetch in the hallway is not possible without knocking the whole place down. However, you can still remain indoors by utilising the stairways of the building as all you have to do is attach a leash to your dog and start climbing.

Teach your dog some new tricks

If your dog has arthritis or any other injuries it is best to avoid stairs or any strenuous exercise altogether. They do not have to miss out on all the fun though. While they may not be physically active, they will still enjoy metal stimulation so spend some time teaching your dog new tricks such as to give a high five, shake, bring your slippers or even to put their toys away!  

This Blog was written by the furry family at Petplan Pet Insurance & Petplan Equine Australia. We love pets and  people who love pets! We offer pet Insurance for Dogs, Cats, Horses & Ponies (including third party liability; horse floats, saddlery & tack). We specialise in ‘covered for life’ dog insurance, cat insurance and equine insurance. Please visit us on facebook or on our website.

*The Beautiful frame surrounding Bailey was sourced and created by Sunflower Studio 

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