Activities For Polo Players With Dogs

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Introduction

When you think of polo, you likely automatically think of horses. But what about your dog? If you love playing polo and you also love your dog, you may want to find ways to incorporate the two into one happy activity. Luckily, you can do just that! There are plenty of polo related games that you and your dog can play so that you can pursue your polo passion with your dog right by your side.

Practice Your Grip

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Any Day
Cheap
Easy
20 min
Items needed
Tennis Ball
Activity description
When playing polo, you need to have a very strong grip in order to hold on to your club and your horse while moving at rapid speeds. Strengthening your hand muscles will improve your grip and your overall polo game. Luckily for your dog, you can practice your grip using their favorite toy - a tennis ball! These simple tennis ball exercises are something you can do in between throwing the ball for your dog. All you need is a tennis ball or two and a dog who is ready to play fetch! Play inside or out depending on the weather, you and your dog will have fun either way.
Step
1
Easy squeezy
Hold a tennis ball in your palm and squeeze it with all your fingers as tightly as you can for five seconds, release the grip and throw the ball for your dog. When your pup brings it back, squeeze it again, as hard as you can, for another five seconds then throw again! Do this easy squeeze at least 15 times to really feel the muscles in your hand working (and to give your dog a good workout)!
Step
2
Open squeeze
Hold the tennis ball between your thumb and four fingertips as if you were making your hand look like a mouth with the tennis ball as the lips. Squeeze the ball with the tips of your fingers and hold for five seconds then throw the ball for your dog. Repeat this squeeze for another 15 reps - is your dog getting tired of playing fetch yet? Probably not!
Step
3
One finger squeeze
Hold the tennis ball with just your thumb and pointer finger and squeeze for five seconds using your fingertips. Then switch to your index finger and thumb and squeeze, then your middle finger and squeeze. Squeeze the ball with each individual finger and your thumb for five seconds each while your patient dog waits. Throw the ball after you have done every finger - your dog will be anxiously waiting the entire 20 seconds!!
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Barn Trip

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Any Day
Cheap
Normal
1 hr
Items needed
Treats
Leash
Collar
Activity description
As an avid polo player, you likely spend a lot of time at a barn or at the stables caring for your polo horse. Of course, horses are at the center of the game of polo but that doesn't mean all other animals have to be left behind! Know who would love to join you at the barn? Your dog! Not only would your pup love going to the barn just because they would get to be with you but they will also enjoy being around other animals. If you are already a member of a barn then this activity is "free" for you and you can go rain or shine!
Step
1
Barn rules
Before bringing your dog to the barn or stables, make sure that pets are allowed to join you. Some barns may have rules against dogs visiting and for good reason - some horses can be spooked by dogs. Once your barn gives your dog the a-okay to visit, you are ready to go! Grab that leash and get your dog ready for a field trip.
Step
2
Slow and steady
The first time you bring your dog to the barn, be sure to keep them on a leash and by your side at all times. Let your dog sniff around but keep them at a safe distance from the horses. If you'd like to introduce your dog to your specific polo horse, do so slowly and let the two animals meet naturally. Respond to any positive or negative behavior on your dog or horse's part appropriately!
Step
3
Free run
Once your dog is comfortable at the barn and the horses are comfortable with your dog, let your pup run free. Your dog will likely stay with you and near their animal friends but if you are worried, find a vacant fenced in polo field where your dog can run free while you play a match or two. You will likely play better knowing that your dog is having fun nearby and not cooped up at home!
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Swing Practice

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Sunny Day
Cheap
Easy
1 hr
Items needed
Polo Ball
Foot Mallet
Activity description
Having a great swing is a necessity in polo so it is definitely something you need to work on in order to become a great polo player. Don't worry, it is not something you need to practice alone - your dog can help you! You also don't need your horse to be able to practice your swing, you can easily do this activity in any field, on foot. It doesn't cost much to practice your swing as you only need a foot mallet and a polo ball. Sunny weather is best for this activity so that you and your dog can enjoy being outside as you practice.
Step
1
Find a field
Find a flat, fenced in field where you and your dog can play. If you are lucky enough to have a nice backyard, you can easily use that, or the polo field you play at may let you practice on a real polo field when there are no games. Leash up your dog, grab your foot mallet and your ball and go!
Step
2
Swing and retrieve
Place the polo ball on the ground and bend your knees as if you were on horseback. Swing your mallet and your arms back and forth a few times and then hit the ball on one swing, using as much strength as you have. Your dog will fly after the ball and retrieve it for you so that you can swing again!
Step
3
Aim and swing
Work on your aim in combination with your swing by trying to make your polo ball hit a designated spot on the field. Set up a goal if desired or just try to get the ball near a tree before your dog is able to snatch it up. If you practice frequently, your polo game will greatly improve and your dog will likely start napping more!
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More Fun Ideas...

Study

Spend some time looking up articles, facts and new events in the polo field. While you immerse yourself in the world of polo, have your dog by your side to pet and cuddle.

Stretches

Staying limber is key to your polo game and stretching at home is essential. While your dog takes a nice nap on the couch, straddle the back of the couch, as if it were a horse, and hang out there for a while to stretch your legs.

Conclusion

As you can see, polo is not just a sport for the horses, dogs can participate too! Your dog will love the fact that they get to spend more time with you rather than being passed by for the game of polo. These new and fun activities will make your dog one happy, polo-loving pup! So bring your dog to the barn with you, grab that tennis ball for some stretch fetch, and swing away at the polo ball and let your dog retrieve it - you will both have a blast!