Less than 25% of people who start a diet and exercise routine stick to their plans for more than a month, but it’s a little harder to skip jogging when your dog is waiting for you at the door. Dogs are wonderful friends of hiking and exercise. Working with your dog on implementing healthy habits can increase motivation and make you both happier and healthier.
“A balanced diet and regular exercise are just as important for pets as they are for humans, and many of the health benefits of a healthy lifestyle are the same,” said Dr. Arielle Markley, Veterinarian in the Canine Physical Rehabilitation & Sports Medical Center at Ohio State University Veterinary Medical Center. “Your pet can help you be accountable because your plan is no longer just about your own health, it’s also about theirs.”
Health problems tend to be more common in overweight dogs. From knee injuries and arthritis problems to chronic diseases like diabetes, being overweight can affect your dog’s health.
Partnering with your dog might be the motivation you need. There are many creative ways to get active with your dog, such as: Just as you shouldn’t run a full marathon without training, this also applies to dogs. It’s important to work them up slowly, especially if your dog hasn’t been very active.