Fun Exercises To Do With Animals

August 26, 2014

Physical activity in your dog, cat, or other animal can prevent diabetes, heart problems, and obesity. Shelter animals in particular benefit from the physical exertion and social stimulation that a good play session can provide.

Besides keeping you both healthy, exercise can also be a means of bonding with your four-legged friend. Here are a few fun exercises you can enjoy with your pet:

Tag
Everyone loves a classic game of tag, even animals. This is the perfect game to get both yours and your pet’s heart rate up. Simply chase your dog around, ‘tag’ him, turn tail, and run in the other direction. Many cats love this game too.

Monkey in the Middle
Grab a bouncy ball and stand about six feet away from a wall. Encourage your cat or dog to stand between you and the wall. Bounce the ball against the wall and catch it again, not letting it bounce off the floor. Your cat or dog will run back and forth trying to catch the ball. Let the ball fall to the floor every so often so your pet can catch it. Once this happens, they’ll likely run away from you with the ball, turning this into a game of tag as you run after him. You should both get a good workout with this fun fetching game.

Yoga
This is another good exercise for both cats and dogs. Ever notice how your pet jumps onto your yoga mat the minute it hits the floor? Instead of shooing him out of the room for your next yoga session, invite him to lay on the mat with you. Many animals are naturally curious about all those weird poses you’re doing on the floor. Cats and dogs in particular are already familiar with up- and down- dog style stretches, so why not let him perform these poses right next to you?

When exercising with any animal, it’s best to find activities he likes to do naturally, then find a way to get in some physical exercise for yourself in the process. This is especially true of less domesticated animals like horses. With some creativity, you can find the perfect activity for you and your animal, and you’ll both benefit from a healthier, happier lifestyle.

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