We love to spoil our dogs!
But sometimes we spoil them in ways that turn out to be not so good for them. Beyond teeth and gum (and dog breath) health discussed on our other helpful page, we need to pay special attention to dog diet and exercise! In this case, let’s take three tips from the human parenting play book and apply them to our favorite part of the family…
Tip 1: Put down the video game controller and get outside and play!!
OK folks, we know this is true – when we are sitting on the couch in front of the boob-tube watching Welcome Back Kotter reruns (anyone under 45 will need to look that one up) or playing XBox Call of Duty World War II (anyone over 45 will need to look that one up), our best furry friend is sitting right there with us. And while we are eating the Cheetos he or she is snacking out of the food bowl.
Do you both a favor – shut the TV and get moving! Practical ideas:
- Set a regular time for 30 minutes early in the day and 30 minutes late in the day. Take the pup for a walk and…be sure to be out there the full 30 minutes, including fetch and other playtime, not just poop-time.
- If the weather is bad, then play run-around-the-couch and indoor fetch for 20 minutes. Keep an eye on the clock so you don’t cheat yourself. And BE SURE to clear the play space of breakables.
Tip 2: No desert unless you’ve done your homework and eaten your vegetables!!
Homework for our dogs is their activity and exercise. See Tip 1 – duh… No unhealthy snacks unless they’ve had their active time!
Don’t feed them the tasty but non-nutrition doggy treats unless they have had their appropriate portion of their healthy food. This has three benefits:
- Their diet is much more nutritious
- They won’t pack on the unhealthy pounds
- They’ll be full on the healthy stuff so they won’t beg for the treats so forcefully…That means you can buy fewer treats at the grocery store which puts the money $$ back in your pocket!
Tip 3: Play well with others!
Dogs are super active when they are playing with their pals. If you have more than one pup at home, then when its outside time (see Tip 1 – duh), take them both and let them spend that 30 minutes competing for the fetch ball and playing roughhouse (with each other, not you – you don’t want to come home covered in dog drool and mud (or maybe you do ??)).
If your pup is an only child, then schedule play dates with other dogs and their owners to meet up in someone’s yard or at the park. And make it 30 minutes of fetch and roughhouse. Or if you are lucky enough to live near a dog park head there on the regular. As as added benefit you will do some socializing of your own with the other dog owners…You can afford to miss a few of the Welcome Back Kotter episodes. Your brain will thank you.
So keep the pup active and see that he or she eats more healthy food over the treats, right! It’s OK to treat them like our human kids (or a little better :- ) ).
We always want the best for our best friends! — Aaron
And don’t forget to check out our most recent product review on a great health chew treat ==> A healthy dog is a happy dog