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Effective Ways To Exercise Your Dog During Lockdown

Effective Ways To Exercise Your Dog During Lockdown

By Mary-Jane Gallagher

Now that the confirmed number of Coronavirus cases in South Africa nears 1,000, a country-wide lockdown has been imposed. One of the most worrying things for dog owners that have just adopted a dog is that the health minister has banned owners from walking their dogs during the lockdown. But fear not, as these tips will ensure your pooch gets the exercise that he needs during this period.

Play traditional games

South Africans work an average of 42.5 hours every week. When you work this much, it can be difficult to find the time time to do the things that your dog loves, such as a simple game of fetch or tug of war. Yet, during lockdown these games are the perfect exercises for bored hounds that need to exert their energy. If you’ve got a long corridor, a game of fetch will work particularly well. Alternatively, spend a little time clearing out one of your rooms so that it can become your dog’s playroom during lockdown. Tug of war will also give your dog some fun and enjoyment and is sure to test your upper body strength too.

Get out the gym equipment

With lockdown forcing you to stay indoors for weeks on end, you’re probably concerned about your own fitness and mental health as well as your pet’s. The good news is that in-home gym equipment is the perfect solution for the pair of you. Treadmills are great exercise for both humans and dogs. Research shows that dogs can burn 3.75 calories per pound of body weight during a half-hour session, while you can burn 280 calories in just 20 minutes when running on a 5% incline.

To ensure your body recovers from the exercise and is ready to work out again the following day, you and your pooch can relax and stretch out your muscles using tools such as massage rollers. These rollers help to prevent stiffness and can be used on parts of the body prone to soreness following physical activity, such as the legs. Similar tools can also be used on your dog’s legs, or you could simply indulge your pet by giving him a massage with your hands.

Scavenger hunt

Setting up a scavenger hunt around your home and garden is another fun activity for active hounds that will challenge them both physically and mentally. To do this, you’ll need to hide your dog’s favourite food, treats, and much-loved toys in various spots around your home for him to sniff out. Kongs, plastic cups and blankets can all be used to hide items in or under, and you can make the hunt more difficult as the days go on to make it more fun and less predictable.

The news that dog owners are unable to walk their pets during South Africa’s lockdown was a shock to most. But there’s no need for your or your pet to miss out during this time, as there are plenty of ways you can exercise your pooch in your own home.