Responsible and creative exercise for dogs and cats
More than 50% of the pets are obese! This can cause many health issues; risk for arthritis, higher chance of diabetes and kidney failure etc. To keep your pet in good health and to keep the weight under control you can adjust yourpet’s diet and make sure he or she gets more exercise:
- If your dog or cat is too obese, we recommend the use of special diet food, for example, Royal Canin Obesity food. These pallets contain fewer calories, but more fibers, so your pet will feel satisfied but will not get unnecessary calories! Beside this, the pallets will have the right amount of nutrients, minerals, and vitamins. So you make sure your pet gets exactly what it needs without developing a shortage in anything. IN the end, this food has a high protein contact. The later makes that your pet remain the same amount of muscle tissue. All those characteristics will help your dog or cat to reduce weight on a healthy and safe way!
- If you want to give a treat, keep in mind how often and how much you do this. Choose healthy snacks, which contain less energy and talk to your housemates/family members and choose one person who will be in charge of feeding of your pets. Some dogs even love cucumbers and carrots! Give it a try!
- You cannot resist to begging eyes while you are preparing your own sandwich? Put your dog or cat in another room while you are preparing your food, so you can resist the temptation to give anything to your dog or cat.
- Go out for a walk on a regular basis, as much as the weather allows you. Use obstacles as trees and benches where your dog can jump over.
- Swimming is a really good exercise, to strengthen the muscles without an extra load on the joints. If you have your own swimming pool in the backyard and you don t use it yourself let your dog have some fun. Most dogs will love it!
- Cycling with your dog next to the bike is a really good exercise too. But watch out for the other drivers, not all the drivers in Dubai will pay attention to you.
- Train you dog to walk on a treadmill, this will for sure help in the hot Dubai summers te get your dog some daily exercise.
- Play ‘hide and seek’ games with your dog. Hide the food in special feeding balls, puzzle feeders or snuffle mats. In nature, the parents of our pets were used to search for food for days or weeks. Your pet doesn’t have to finish their bowl in a few minutes, Hide their food and they will have fun for hours and it will keep their weight under control too! By their nature, dogs are opportunists. They descend from a species of hunting canines who have to eat when the eating was good, regardless of the situation. The instinct to gulp as much food as possible before anyone else can get to it is a survival mechanism ingrained in them to varying degrees depending on the lineage of your specific dog. Certainly, not all dogs are like this. While most tend to eat quickly and with minimal chewing, some dogs pace themselves just fine. The condition of your dog’s life may also further impetus to take up this behavior. If you should adopt a rescue, the may previously have been neglected or underfed in a situation where there are many other pets competing for food and attention. Having a slow feed bowl or puzzle feeder in hand to those situations where your dog insists on eating too fast is a great idea. By putting them to work for the reward of food, you get the double benefit of slowing them down while also providing a challenge that stimulates their mind.
Exercise tips for Cats
Cats love to play with toys, which keeps them entertained. Cats are predators and they way to get them to play is to let them use their hunting talents.
- The best example is a laser light, take a laser pointer and skitter it across the floor like a bug.
- There are even special videos developed (see Youtube or ipadgamesforcats.com) where your cat can try to catch a fish on the screen (by tapping the screen the fish will appear somewhere else), chase a laser light… You will be blown away how smart the cats are!
Cats do want toys, but the toys should be ‘prey play’ oriented. In the wild, a cat will only stalk prey for about 3-5 minutes. After that, he will give up and go search somewhere else. So do not try to play longer than the genetic capacity of your cat. When he/she is beginning to lose interest, change to another game. Also, let them win occasionally. Put a taste treat under the toy and let them pounce on it, eat it, and win. Toys work better than training your cat to walk on a leash. They don’t get a lot of exercise from it because they are too busy sniffing around and checking things out. The main reason to walk your cat on a leash is to safely give them some time outdoors when they can’t run away. It is more mental exercise than physical exercise.
Losing weight has to happen gradually and not in a rush! A weight reduction of 1-2 % of the bodyweight/week is more than enough. Is it difficult for you to keep the weight of your pet under control? No problem, please contact the clinic and we will help you! We will weigh your pet regularly and can help you with the calculation of the right amount of food, based on the size of your pet, the activity level, and optimal weight. For more information please contact the clinic.
Watch some of these very creative examples and get inspired:
How to train a dog for the treadmill: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqtqEbOilfs
Cat playing with snack ball: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YnJZlFJOkH0
Dog playing with snack ball: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRDGr2tOtcs
Automatic Ball throwing machine: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HJ9qNa9318o
Cat chasing a laser pointer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qot5_7NFUtA