For many people, summertime means spending more time outdoors – taking advantage of the warm and sunny weather. If you enjoy working out, partaking in activities like running a marathon is one for the record books (and beats being in the gym). However, if you want to take your pup along for the adventure, it’s important to know how to keep them safe while taking them out in warm weather to train alongside you.
Is my dog dehydrated? A good rule of thumb is if you are hot and thirsty, it’s likely your dog feels the same. Dehydration occurs in both humans and dogs when there’s limited access to water when you’re hot. There are a few different outcomes that can happen when your dog gets dehydrated, including vomiting, diarrhea and heatstroke. A few symptoms to look for from your pup are panting, dry nose, reduced energy and loss of appetite. In a pinch, you may wonder if you can give your dog Gatorade. However, water is always best for your dog.
Whether your dog is exercising with you outside or indoors, it’s important that they have plenty of water in a place that is easily accessible and can’t be spilled easily. Also, you need to keep it clean, refilling it daily with fresh water. You can also make the process more engaging for them with ice cubes. My dogs love licking and chasing ice cubes across the kitchen floor.
What is the best diet for a dog who exercises? Again, just like with people, you don’t want to eat a big meal right before working out. The same goes for your pup. Experts recommend that you don’t feed your pup an hour before or after exercising. A diet high in protein is great for dogs who engage in daily activities such as running or jogging. Protein is essential in helping dogs build and maintain their muscles. High proteins such as pork and venison are great examples of health foods for athletic dogs.
Can my dog go the distance? There’s no doubt that all dogs can benefit from exercise. However, there are certain dog breeds that naturally require a lot of exercise and thus, would be great for working out outdoors or training for a marathon. Some of those breeds include: Boxers, Golden Retrievers, Jack Russell Terriers, Boston Terriers, Labrador Retrievers and Huskies, among others. We all know how much our dogs love to sleep, so know that while moderate exercise is good for all dog breeds, some dog breeds may not need the extra exercise.
Latasha Ball is the Marketing Coordinator for Pets Global, the founders of pet food brands Zignature, Essence Pet Foods and Fussie Cat. She has more than 10 years of experience in marketing and public relations in which she enjoys being able to combine her professional background with her passion for animals.