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Helping your dog become more active can give it a healthier, happier, and longer life. Whether you’ve got a feisty young pup who needs more outlets for its seemingly boundless energy or you have a dog that’s getting on in years and has started to slow down a little, it’s important that you find ways to help it get the right amount of physical activity. Here are some tips for helping your dog be more active.

Get Your Dog Into Your Favorite Sports

Being included in your active hobbies is going to make your dog feel super special. While you obviously can’t bring it to play with you in a league match, your furry athlete will be thrilled to get in on the action when you’re throwing the ball around with friends or running drills at soccer practice.

Bring along some equipment that your dog can use. When you’re packing up baseball gloves or softball mitts, bring along a couple balls that you don’t mind your dog chewing on. If you’re playing a sport with larger balls like football or volleyball, try deflating one a little bit because it will be easier for your dog to pick up and carry. Make sure to also bring along plenty of water for your dog along with a collapsible travel bowl.

Help Your Dog Build Social Skills 

Spending time playing with other canines can be a really fun way for your dog to enjoy active playtime. The social skills that dogs need to get along well with their fellow canines start developing while puppies are still with their mothers and littermates. For proper socialization, puppies must stay with their mother and  litter until they’re at least eight weeks old. A puppy class is a great place for your dog to continue expanding on those skills that it began to cultivate with its siblings. Once a puppy has had all of the requisite vaccinations, plan some trips to the bark park so that your fur baby can learn doggie etiquette and start to enjoy interactions with other dogs.

If you have an older dog who has exhibited fear towards other canines, a behavioral therapist may be able to offer some assistance. Rather than going to the bark park, having one or two furry friends over to your place would be a good setting to make your dog comfortable with interactions. However, if your dog consistently displays fear or aggression to other animals, don’t try to force interactions. Instead, plan park outings either early in the morning or mid-afternoon when you can expect to have the run of the place.

Go Swimming

Swimming is fantastic exercise for water-loving breeds. It’s a great low-impact form of exercise, so it’s a good choice of activity for older dogs. If you have a young pup, introduce them to the water watchfully. A life vest designed for dogs can help them stay safe and prevent exhaustion.

Getting your own pool could transform your backyard into a pooch’s paradise. If you don’t have the square footage, plan some outings to dog-friendly beaches or lakes in your area.

Give Your Dog a Mobility Supplement

Just like people, inflammation can really slow dogs down. If dogs need to shed a few pounds, the extra body weight that they carry around tends to worsen joint inflammation.

A mobility supplement with cosequin and Omega-3s is a great way to help your dog maintain proper joint function. This is particularly helpful for older animals that have begun to experience mobility issues associated with age-related degeneration.

Helping your dog be active will enable it to maintain a healthy body weight and good muscle tone. Moreover, your dog will really love getting to be active while it gets to spend time with its favorite human.

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