Dogs, like humans, need daily exercise in order to stay healthy and happy. Also like people, dogs vary in natural strength and flexibility. The sports and games mentioned will be directed towards the dogs who are naturally flexible, although all dogs can participate at a lower level. Slowly increase the difficulty to help your pooch gain even more flexibility! To keep your dog and their muscles healthy and relaxed, you should strengthen them by playing certain games or activities that engage the muscles.
Have you ever wondered if your dog could do yoga? Well, they can! Just like you, your pooch will benefit from stretching their muscles. Yoga can help any dog become more flexible, and is great for keeping your already able dog in the best and bendiest shape! Doggy yoga is fun and easy, and your dog will love to participate if you include treats! This activity works in any weather, it doesn’t take up much space and can be done almost anywhere, even in your own backyard or bedroom. At first, even if you are working with a very flexible dog, you should start off easy and every time that you do the exercises you can make them a bit more difficult and requiring more flexibility. Always be gentle when stretching your dog, and don’t push them past their limits. There are actually quite a few yoga poses that your dog can do.
Pole bending is a fun exercise for many dogs, and it is also a sport that you and your dog can compete in. This activity is done best by dogs who have the best flexibility, as they will be able to bend and move through the poles quickly and easily. This activity, like most, will require practice before your dog can really master it. When you are first starting off, you can set up only a few poles and they can be farther apart, until your dog understands the game. As your pooch progresses, you can add more poles and place them closer together to add challenge and see how incredibly flexible your pet is! There are many pole sets available for you to buy and use on your own at home.
Teaching your dog to run through an agility course is a popular canine activity, and it requires dogs to be able to handle almost any type of obstacle. Agility courses can include anything from tunnels, bending poles, ramps, hoops, hurdles and seesaws. In order to master all of these elements, your dog will need to be in very good shape physically, and very flexible. This activity as well requires training and practice before your dog will be able to quickly move through the whole course, and when you think that you are ready you can compete in this canine sport!
This is a popular canine sport that involves the owner throwing a disk, or Frisbee, which the dog must catch. In high levels of this sport, your dog would perform impressive leaps and spins, which requires athleticism and flexibility.
After a long day or hard workout, sometimes all that you need is a nice massage. Believe it or not, dogs love getting massages too! Doing this will not only keep your dog’s muscles flexible and relaxed, but will strengthen your bond as well.
Flexible dogs are great to have as pets, as they can participate in more challenging sports and activities. It is best to keep your dog busy with activities that allow them to use these muscles so that they don’t lose their impressive flexibility! However, don’t push your dog too hard, as you don’t want to injure them. The activities mentioned above are best suited for dogs with advanced flexibility, but can also be used to help less able dogs slowly gain flexibility and strength.