Spending more time with pets helps to fight stress and depression. The same goes for the pets; spending time playing and cuddling with their owners is linked to dogs' stress-management. Indulging in outdoor activities with your dog not only strengthens your bond but also provides physical and mental stimulation.
Even more so, dogs need regular exercise to remain healthy. Indulging in outdoor activities with your dog helps to get the much-needed physical and mental stimulation. However, it would help if you were wary about taking elderly dogs for outdoor activities. The physical activities for dogs stricken with arthritis and hip dysplasia must be short.
To help you make memories with your pets, we have amassed 20 different outdoor activities to do with your dog.
10 Outdoor Activities for Dog and Owner
Here is the list of the ten most fun outdoor activities for dogs and dog owners.
Biking with your furry friend can be both adventurous and physically stimulating. An active dog can burn off seemingly endless energy by accompanying you on a bike ride. However, not every dog can catch up with your bike; some are made to sit in the basket and enjoy the ride.
It’s more complicated than you might think to ride a bike along with a dog on a leash, so it's better to get a little practice before you hit the trail. Start with biking with a leash on within a small distance.
Consider your dog’s physical fitness to determine how long it can keep up. Pups and older dogs should bike with a leash. It would be best if you only chose outdoor-active adult dogs.
Ensure to carry snacks and water along the ride and take regular breaks in between.
Hiking involves a considerable amount of adventure, adrenaline, and risk. It takes more effort than what you may assume by just looking at someone’s Instagram photo with their dog on the Rockies.
Not every dog is adapted to walking long distances; hence you should start with a short walk and later increase it to multiple days.
Active hiking dogs can walk long distances regularly. They can hike 15 to 20 miles per day, whereas the dogs that aren’t used to long hikes can walk only 10 miles per day or lesser.
Walking through the prairie, going up in the Rockies, or trailing through the national park are few of the most sought hiking with dogs.
Here are few tips to get started: Start slow, increase the time gradually, take regular breaks, and assess your dog's health at each interval.
Jogging is both fun and physically stimulating activity for all kinds of dogs. It would be best if you considered taking your dog for a regular jog around your neighborhood, on the beach, or in the park.
Nothing tires out a dog with lots of energy like a long run. Consider leashing your dog if it has tendencies to run off. Both your and dog can benefit from regular jogging as it promotes cardiovascular activity.
Ensure you have a dog whose type and temperament suit as a running partner. Elderly dogs would only like occasional walks instead of a jog.
Dogs are natural swimmers, and they'd love to take a splash into the water whenever they feel warm. If you live in a warmer place, it's a great idea to take a dip in the pool or pond with your furry friend. Both of you can cool off and enjoy a great time together!
It's a low-impact sport, so you needn't worry about stressing your older dogs' joints. It also helps to work on many muscles simultaneously to be a productive activity for obese dogs.
The swimming pool is a perfect place for dogs to swim as the enclosed surface and lesser depth keeps them safe. Be careful about taking your dog for a wash in the river, ocean, or pond.
Play fetch with your dog whenever you're in the backyard, porch, or the park. Dogs love to fetch items such as stick wood, ball, and Frisbee.
Fetch has a triple function; it gives your dog needed exercise, it helps strengthen the bond between you, and it gets him into the habit of returning to you.
You can also play a game of fetch with your dog in the swimming pool with items like Frisbee and balls. It'll motivate them to swim more and activate their muscles. Remember, dogs have to be athletic and agile most of all to engage in the game of fetch.
Off-leash Dog Park
Plan a doggie play-date with a friend at your local dog park! There should be numerous parks in your neighborhood, but you should try finding a park that is safe for dogs to play off-leash. Dogs love to roam around, play, and explore things, and a leash often comes in their way.
You can give them much-needed free time by taking them off-leash in the park. It shouldn't be a problem as long as the park is filled with well-socialized dogs and dog-savvy owners.
Ensure to train your dog before you can let it roam free! Monitor your dogs for inappropriate behaviors such as bullying/aggressive play, jumping on people, and excessive barking. You and your dog wouldn't want to become a nuisance to the others in the park.
All dogs love water, so it’s a great idea to take them for a boat ride. If you want, you can let them make a splash in the water.
Even though they love water, you should be careful about allowing them to roam free. Even if you're careful, be prepared to protect and save your dog if they fall overboard. Get a pet life jacket in case your dog isn't water-friendly or too small. Don't forget to offer them fresh water and shade along the way. Dogs can quickly dehydrate in warm weather!
However, not every dog is boat-friendly. Take them for a short spin and let them acclimatize to the boat life before you embark on a long boat trip.
Hit the Beach
Many ocean and lake beaches are dog-friendly. You can use this opportunity to play fetch with them, jog, or run around. However, it would be best if you were careful about harmful things.
Anything that can harm you at the beach can also harm your dogs, such as sunburn, riptides, jellyfish, broken glass, sharp shells, and aggressive dogs.
If you haven't potty trained your dog, avoid taking them to beaches that strictly monitor for dog poops. Don't forget to bring plenty of fresh, cool water and snacks.
Remember that the sand can be scorching on sensitive paws, so provide a blanket or towel for your dog's comfort when he takes a break from romping in the surf.
Take agility class
Agility classes are great for dogs to start in sports. This is the outdoor sports where you guide and direct your dog through a pre-set course within a specific time limit. The courses typically have between 14-20 obstacles ranging from tunnels, weave poles, tire jumps, and seesaws.
If you want to have a great time with your dog while engaging it with something useful, taking agility classes together can be a great idea. Do remember, the dogs usually start competing in agility between the ages of 1 and 2.
It helps to foster concentration, flexibility, companionship, trust, and body awareness in dogs.
Explore nearby forest or trail
Consider exploring the nearby forest or trail with your dog. Camping is a great idea to spend time outdoors with your furry friend. You can indulge in exploring the trail, sightseeing, scavenging for geocaching hunt, swimming in the river, etc. You can take a car up to the destination and then start exploring the place on foot.
If your dog isn’t comfortable spending time inside the tent, you can come back to your car anytime you want.
No matter where you live, undertake these opportunities to spend more time with your pet. Take advantage of the warmer weather and indulge in more outdoor activities that your dog loves to do.
Urban Pet Hospital & Resort is the best doggy daycare in Urbandale. Get in touch with us to learn more ways to spend time outdoors with your pet.