Getting Your Dog in Shape

After the first couple of years we had her, Magic started to gain some weight. She chased cars up and down our yard, intimidated deer and played fetch everyday, but that was evidently not cutting it. Sometimes Magic would run around with our neighbor’s dog, Comet, but when they moved Magic became lonely and lazy. To cheer her up and help her shed the pounds, we came home with Buddy!

Magic and Buddy get a little lazy from time to time!

But if your dog is overweight and getting a second dog isn’t in the cards, there are plenty of other options. I’ve already preached the power of a good walk, but there are many fun and creative ways to give your dog exercise. Using the Purina Pro Plan P5 app available on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod through the iTunes App Store, I have been given a ton of ideas ranging from jogging to swimming to creating agility courses! With this app, it is easy to find activities that get the job done in any amount of time. Pro Plan P5 also has activities categorized by intensity. So, if you only have 15 minutes to workout with your dog, you can look up high intensity activities. The same goes if you have an hour and need to find an activity with a lighter level of intensity. And each activity has an instructional video, so that you and your dog can be sure to be working out safely!

However, it can’t all be about exercise; your dog needs to have the right diet too. Eventually, we realized that Magic was eating Buddy’s food as part of their occasional alpha dog power plays. In order to make sure that she was only eating her food, we now have to sit by their food bowls to make sure everyone is playing nicely. Early on, we also chose to feed Magic and Buddy only once a day with a satisfying amount of food given to them every morning. However, we did not consider the amount of treats the two consumed! After recognizing the number of treats we gave them per day, we started substituting Milk Bones for ice cubes every now and then.Just like people, we need to be conscious of our pet’s weight and take the appropriate measures to make sure that our furry friends are functioning at their healthiest level. While exercise is key – and can even be a fun bonding experience – it’s important that your dog has the meal schedule and the nutrition he or she needs!

Has your dog had any weight troubles? What have you done to help him or her get back to being happy and fit? I’d love to read all your suggestions and brainstorm other ways to get our pets in shape, so be sure to leave a comment!

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