Activities For Large Dogs Outside

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Introduction

When you have a large dog, you should expect an increase in energy and hyperactivity in your life. This is because the majority of large dog breeds are known for being active and vigorous. However, when you have a big ball of energy running around the house, it can become disastrous. For large dog breeds, outdoor playtime is important to keep them stimulated while avoiding destruction in your home. Activities done outside can also beneficial to your dog not only to keep them physically active but also to enable them to discover new things, see new sights and even meet fellow canines along the way. Here are a number of outdoor activities that you may try with your big, furry buddy.

Camping

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Sunny Day
Cheap
Normal
24 Hours
Items needed
Food
Water
Campfire treats
First aid kit
Tent
Dog bed/tent
Leash
Sleeping bag
Activity description

Most, if not all dogs are natural lovers of the outdoors. Hence, camping is a great choice for a dog-friendly activity that you and your furry friend can try. Camping presents many opportunities for dogs. Firstly, campsites provide lots of spaces to explore and play in. You can also go for a walk or a run with your dog while taking in the new environment. Another possibility is to go swimming or paddling together if there is a shallow lake or calm river close to your campsite. You may also lay back, relax and enjoy the bonfire with your dog at night. Lastly, your dog can serve not only as your companion but also your guard, especially if you are going to be camping on your own. For obvious reasons, camping is done best during sunny weather or a clear day out and can be done on the cheap, particularly if you already have lots of camping gear available. 

Step
1
Find a dog-friendly campsite
When planning to camp, the first obvious thing you have to do is to look for a campsite. Most of these are open areas where one can simply go and camp out. However, bringing a dog is a whole different story. Check if your chosen site is dog-friendly and if there are any dog-related rules that you need to know about, such as keeping your dog off-leash.
Step
2
Pack all the essentials
Preparation is key when it comes to camping. You would not want to be all settled in the campgrounds and eventually discover that you have forgotten something important. Make sure that you have all the things that you and your dog need. This includes food (and dog food for your pup!), water, a first aid kit, tent, sleeping bag and other things that might come in handy during your camping trip.
Step
3
Camp out!
When you make it to the campsite, fix up your things and set up your tent to be as sturdy as possible. Once everything is set up and all your stuff is arranged, you can then plan for the activities that you would like to do with your dog. This may include going for a walk, cooking up some campfire treats, playing fetch or several other outdoor excursions. Do not forget to feed your dog. Come sleeping time, it is up to you whether you will let your dog sleep inside your tent or if you will provide a separate dog tent or bed.
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Dock Diving

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Sunny Day
Free
Normal
30 - 60 min
Items needed
Food
Water
Flotation vest
Floating toy
Activity description

Dock diving, otherwise known as dock jumping, is a canine sport wherein a dog jumps from a dock into the water in order to retrieve an item. In some ways, this game is similar to the classic game of fetch, but with the added challenge of retrieving the item in the water. Almost all large dog breeds have good swimming skills. However, if you are not that confident in your dog’s ability to swim, you may use a flotation vest to ensure your dog’s safety. This activity can easily be done for free and is ideally done under good weather conditions with no rain or strong winds. When your dog gets more confident with the sport, you may take things up a notch and join a local Dock Diving club where your pup gets to compete with other dogs. 

Step
1
Look for a swimming spot
To be able to do some dock diving, you obviously would need a swimming area, preferably one with a dock. However, a dock is not really a requirement; a lakeshore or some other swimming area will do. It is important that you make sure that this swimming spot you find is safe and free of any hazardous obstacles, such as hidden rocks, to keep your dog free from harm.
Step
2
Have some fun with your dog
To play the sport, you simply need to throw a floating toy into the water and watch as your dog jumps in and retrieves it for you. If your pup is hesitant, you may need to jump in with them a few times until they get the idea. The toy that you will be using should be large and visible enough to be seen. Make sure to not throw the toy too far, especially if your dog is not that strong of a swimmer yet. Also, do not overwork your dog and take ample rest in between your play sessions. Be sure keep your dog hydrated throughout the activity.
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Cycling

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Sunny Day
Cheap
Easy
30 - 60 min
Items needed
Bicycle
Food
Water
Body harness (optional)
Leash (optional)
Reflective vest (optional)
Activity description

One of the best ways to enjoy a nice day outside is to get on a bike and go cycling. Luckily for dog owners, cycling is also a great, dog-friendly activity. Large dogs are usually avid runners and have enough stamina that they can go for a couple of minutes without tiring easily. Therefore, they make for the perfect cycling buddy. This activity is not only a good workout for you and your pooch, it also allows you to spend some quality time together. The best part is that this activity is free of charge and can be done as often as you want, provided that the weather conditions are good. 

Step
1
Get the right gear
Cycling with your dog is easy but you do need the proper gear to get started. Some owners would let their dogs run freely alongside them. However, for your own peace of mind, you can get a reflective vest so that your dog will be visible to you and to other riders or passers-by. If you want to keep your dog attached to your bike during your ride, you should invest on a body harness and leash, preferably a non-tangle one. This allows your dog to still have some freedom to move around without being restricted.
Step
2
Ride along with your buddy
When you have all the needed gear, you can start having some fun on two wheels. You can begin by walking your bike with your dog tagging along until they get a feel for it. Then, you may ride your bike but go at a steady pace that is at par with your dog’s pace. For this activity, it is also recommended that your dog has a good grasp of basic commands, such as stop and go. It is important that you regularly check on your dog and observe if there are any signs of fatigue. If this is the case, stop, hydrate and rest before riding again.
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More Fun Ideas...

Gardening

Gardening is a therapeutic activity that a lot of people do. However, it can be a tiring activity, especially with all that digging. Why not hit two birds with one stone by gardening with your dog? With this activity, you can have your dog dig a hole for your plants. Not only does your dog gets his playtime outside, you also save a lot of time and energy that you would have otherwise used for digging. 

Hiking

If your dog is getting bored with your daily walks, you can make things more exciting and interesting by going on a hike. There are numerous outdoor hiking trails and parks that are dog-friendly. However, do check on the rules because some allow dogs to be off-leash while there are others that don’t. Hiking with your dog is a fun way to spend time and workout together. Just don’t forget to bring enough food and water for the both of you. More importantly, clean up after your dog before leaving the hiking area.

Conclusion

Large dog breeds are usually more active and are in need of more energetic and invigorating activities. As such, it is up to you as their owner to keep them stimulated. The outdoors is the perfect setting for trying new, exciting things with your pooch. Take advantage of the nice weather and the great outdoors with this list of dog-friendly outdoor activities.