Jog on January!

By Tracey Smith // January 2018

Jog on January!

So the festive period is over and done with for yet another year, the decorations are starting to come down and our homes are finally starting to look “normal” again and what are we left with? Well I don’t know about you, but if I saw another slice of turkey a sprout or a pig in blanket it would be too soon, I definitely overindulged over the Christmas period so I think its time to jump on the old bandwagon and set myself a New Years resolution...

Fitness!!!

Now, I could spend money I really don’t have on an annual gym membership and probably only go a handful of times throughout the whole year; or I could combine my motivation to get fit with the love for my spending time with my dog and get fit together!

There are so many ways we can exercise with our dogs but the most popular one is running. I have a healthy and very relentless Patterdale Terrier who I know most definitely has the energy to burn; but as with any form of exercise, we must consider our dogs age, breed and overall general fitness before we start with any kind of regime; maybe think about booking your dog in for a health check with your vet beforehand.

Another aspect to consider, is our dog's overall training; do they walk nicely by your side on a walk, or do they pull on the lead and zig-zag in front of you? Do they have a strong “leave it” response? Your run won’t be very enjoyable if your dog wants to stop and sniff every lamp post on the way or is diving on every scavenging opportunity.  If you’re wanting to run with your dog off lead in a traffic free environment, how strong is your dogs recall? These are all very important points to consider before you start running with your dog.

Always remember to do a warm up with your dog, they need to do one just as much as you do and a nice brisk 5 minute walk beforehand should help to loosen up those muscles for both of you. It also gives your dog a chance to go to the toilet before you start because let's face it, there’s nothing worse than having to stop and pick up your dog's poop, mid-run!

Remember to keep yourself and your dog hydrated throughout, dogs don’t sweat like we do so it’s very important that they have access to water frequently, especially in warm weather, maybe take a water container that your dog can drink from, or a collapsible bowl.

Once your dog has mastered the art of running on the lead, you’ll have yourself an amazing, always willing, running partner, so go and have fun getting fit with your trusty four-legged companion!! You could even look into doing a bit of Canicross!

You’ll be giving Mo Farrah a run for his money before you know it!

Although running is the most popular and least expensive form of exercise, there are many other ways we can enjoy exercise with our dogs. If you’re looking for a fun way to bond with your dog whilst you both get fit, why not give agility a go? We also have flyball, which is a very fast paced and energetic canine sport. A new craze which has also taken the nation by storm is dog yoga. Who wouldn’t want to do yoga with their dog, that’s all I can say!

 So, whichever exercise or sport you decide to try out with your dog, they will need a good level of basic training beforehand, so why not come along to our classes to work on those essential skills.

Don’t forget!

We run regular classes to help you and your dog learn these all important life skills! All you need to do is call 0113 2814941 or email Leedsdogschool@dogstrust.org.uk to enquire and reserve your place on one of our courses.

We also LOVE seeing pictures of you and your dog training at home, attending Dog School classes or even just cute doggy pictures so tag us on Instagram and Twitter @dogschoolleeds