June 25, 2014

Top 5 Summer Hazards for Dogs and Cats

Filed under: Cats,Dogs,Pet Health,Pet Safety Tips — Tags: , , , , , — 1st Pet Naturals @ 9:58 pm

top-5-summer-hazards-for-dogs-and-cats

Are you amping up to get ready for summer activities. Outdoor fun with hiking, water sports, and much more? Being outside and enjoying the sunshine is what summer is all about. Although summer can be a wonderful, carefree time of the year, it is very important that you look after your pet’s health during the heated months. Pets, just like us, are prone to many summer hazardous. Here are seven summer hazards that you should consider for your dog and cat.

1. Sunburn

One of the most common heat-related hazards are sunburns. The cause of sunburns is due to overexposure of UVA rays (ultra-violet rays) that penetrate the Earth’s atmosphere. Exposed skin does not have the necessary protection to reflect these rays, as a result: the skin becomes burned.  Though our pets have fur, their skin still needs to be protected. You can protect your dog or cat;s fur by keeping their exposure to the sun under control. You can also rub coconut oil into their fur. Coconut is a natural sunscreen. Just make sure you reapply the coconut oil every forty-five minutes to an hour for as long as your pet is in the sun.

2. Dehydration

Dehydration results when the body does not have enough fluid. This can be a result of sweating in the sun due to lounging in the heat and also being active under the rays. Always have water handy for your pet no matter where you go. Keep their water bowl full at home and keep a water bowl handy in your car. It is important that water is always available to your pets in the summer heat.

3. Heatstroke

This illness results when the body fails to maintain proper internal temperatures. Heatstroke can often be prevented through staying hydrated and cool. If your pet show symptoms of dehydration,  their body will not have enough fluid to to sweat, which would cool down the body. If you suspect your pet is dehydrated, it is best to seek immediate medical attention.

4. Poison Ivy

Identification is the first step in preventing a rash from poison ivy. This plant is found just about everywhere in North America. It tends to grow along fences and the edges of forests and fields. The leaves are broad and have three leaflets per stem. The oil secreted by the leaves can be spread through direct and indirect contact. Be aware of what poison ivy looks like and avoid taking your cats into shrubs and bushes.

5. Insect Bites

And with plants, come insects. Ticks, mosquitoes, bees, and fleas are rampant in the summertime. Keep a pet-friendly pest repellent handy. If your pet is bitten by an insect, you can also find sprays and ointments that will help soothe their bites and irritation.

What are some of the ways you prevent summer hazards? Let us know in the comment box below.

April 9, 2013

Natural Pet: Naturopathy, Herbal Medicine, Bach Flower Remedies, and Homeopathy

Filed under: Holistic Pet Care — Tags: , — 1st Pet Naturals @ 9:00 am

Naturopathy:

Natural Pet - Holistic PetNaturopathic practitioners do not believe in the use of drugs and surgery, but instead believe in a drugless system of therapies. Such therapies may include using the forces of light, water, heat and massage. Specifically, naturopathic treatments can include:

  • Fasting
  • Hot/cold treatments
  • Exercising
  • Sun bathing
  • Good hygiene
  • A nutritious diet
  • Supplements
  • Vitamins and minerals

 

Many naturopathic practitioners use natural homeopathic drugs. However, there are some who feel that homeopathic remedies are considered drugs, and therefore don’t use them in their treatment regimes.

For more information on naturopathy and certified animal naturopaths visit the American Council of Animal Naturopathy.

Herbal Medicine:

The focus of herbal medicine is to use specific herbal leaves, roots, and flowers to heal one back to health. With a drug store around the corner, you may find the idea of using plants as medicine ridiculous, but there is a long history of people using herbs to help heal their ailments. Even animals seek specific leaves, roots, and flowers to treat themselves back to health.

The concept behind herbal medicine is that plants are living and therefore have energy. This energy helps the body to detoxify, provides the body nutrients, and aids the body in functioning normally. Whereas synthetic drugs, although able to have an effect on the body, do not contain the same energy as a herbal remedy.

Examples of herbal medicine are:

  • Aloe Vera
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Astragalus
  • Chamomile
  • Echinacea
  • Goldenseal
  • Milk Thistle
  • Raspberry Leaf
  • Valerian
  • Crystal Start

Herbal remedies are typically given in large quantities many times throughout the day. This makes it difficult to directly administer to pets, so using capsules or hiding a remedy in your pet’s food might be necessary. Herbal medicine can be also be paired with naturopathic treatments.

It is also wise to note that herbal remedies are medicinal, and if improperly used can have dangerous effects. Consult a veterinarian before administering herbal medicine to your pet.

Bach Flower Remedies:

Bach flower remedies are an interesting holistic treatment because the therapy focuses on treating emotional stress rather than physical body illnesses.

Flower remedies are diluted infusions of flowers and tree buds. There are thirty-eight Bach remedies, with each corresponding to a different mental condition or personality type. Flower remedies can be combined with each other to address different emotional conditions such as fear, uncertainty, lack of interest, despair, loneliness, oversensitivity, and over concern.

Although it is hard to know exactly how a pet is feeling, veterinarians are able to choose the best flower remedy by predicting an animal’s emotions, based on the emotions that occur with different medical illnesses.

Some of the remedies include:

  • Aspen
  • Beech
  • Centaury
  • Chicroy
  • Honeysuckle
  • Mustard
  • Star of Bethlehem
  • Willow

You can add a few drops of a flower remedy into your pet’s water or you can put 1-2 drops directly into their mouth. Flower remedies are not medicine but rather just a type of therapy. The remedies are safe to use with other treatments.

For flower remedy success stories in animals visit The Original Back Flower Remedies.

Homeopathy:

Dr. Loridawn Gordon has discussed homeopathy earlier in this blog, but I will touch upon it once again since it is one of the most popular holistic treatments.

Homeopathy was founded on one basic unifying principle: “Like is cured by like” (aka: The Law of Similars). This means that the treatment found in homeopathy, uses medicine that is known to cause similar symptoms to what an individual already has. Sounds bizarre, right? Well, the miracle in homeopathy is that the medicine used actually triggers a reaction that allows the body to heal itself.

What is even more interesting is that instead of providing a remedy for each symptom that one shows (i.e. headache, fever, congestion, coughing, body pain), just one remedy is used for a whole set of symptoms.

Homeopathic remedies are made from diluted herbs, minerals, and animal products (I’m talking about animal toxins, not animal parts). The more diluted the remedy is, the stronger it actually becomes… again, I know it sounds bizarre, but it’s true!

Since only one remedy is provided to an individual, a doctor has to consider their patient’s unique physical, mental, and emotional health; or in other words, the patient’s whole health. Homeopaths treat a person or animal in their entirety, not just for the problems that they display.

Homeopathic treatment can be paired with naturopathic and nutritional therapies. However, it should not be used with acupuncture or Chinese medicine because they are too similar and may interfere with each other.

Common issues that are treated with homeopathy in pets are:

  • Allergies
  • Arthritis
  • Cancer
  • Diarrhea
  • Gingivitis
  • Immune system disorders
  • Kennel cough
  • Kidney disease
  • Respiratory disease
  • Urinary disorders

 

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April 1, 2013

Natural Pet: Acupuncture and Chiropractic Therapy

Filed under: Holistic Pet Care — Tags: , — 1st Pet Naturals @ 9:00 am

Acupuncture:

Acupuncture is a method that has been used for more than 4000 years in Asian cultures. The traditional theory behind acupuncture is that there is a fundamental energy in the body, Chi, which exists as Yin and Yang. Yin represents disruptive, disturbing, expanded, and negative changes; while Yang represents constructive, focusing, contracted, and positive changes.
Our Chi follows a pathway that is marked by the location of specific acupuncture points, which contain nerves and blood vessels. A skilled therapist will correct the balance of your Chi (Yin and Yang) by inserting needles onto the acupuncture points. Sound scary? Well, word on the street is that you don’t feel a thing! The insertion of needles is said to release endorphins that will decrease pain, stimulate the immune system, dilate blood vessels, and redirect energy.

Techniques of redirecting energy through points in the body may be accomplished through the use of needles (acupuncture), finger pressure (acupressure/shiatsu), the burning of mugwort near body points (moxibuston), and electric stimulation (electro-acupuncture).

Natural Pet-chriporactic-acupunctureAcupuncture is used to help the following conditions:

  • Allergies
  • Arthritis
  • Chronic pain
  • Diabetes
  • Esophageal disorders
  • Gastrointestinal diseases
  • Heart disorders
  • Immune stimulation
  • Inflammation
  • Kidney disorders
  • Liver disorders
  • Musculoskeletal disorders
  • Respiratory disorders

 

Possible complications of acupuncture may include: puncturing a vital organ if the incorrect needle is used, infection at the site where a needle had been inserted, surgery if a needle breaks (due to a patient moving during treatment), and mild sedation in pets who need to relax for treatment. This might make you hesitate about the treatment, but the chances of them occurring are slim.

An acupuncturist may recommend that your pet take supplements to aid in their treatment. This is fine, but it’s best not to combine acupuncture with other holistic methods, especially homeopathy, because the treatments may interfere with each other.

In order to find a reputable acupuncturist for your pet, look for a vet who is registered through the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society or the American Academy of Veterinary Acupuncture (AAVA).

For stories about how pets have benefited from acupuncture visit Animal Wellness Center.

Chiropractic Therapy:

Chiropractors view disease as the misalignment or abnormality of the spine that interfere with nervous system (nerve impulses and blood circulation), and the normal flow of energy that creates life (known as the Chi in acupuncture). The central theory behind chiropractic therapy is that vertebral misalignments, big and small, can block the essential flow of energy through the spinal column. The misalignments put pressure onto the nerves that surround the spine and cause the spinal nerves to become inflamed (known as sublaxation). Sublaxation has the ability to affect body organs that are associated with specific nerves, and as a result impact body functions.

Chiropractic treatment involves the careful manipulation of the vertebrae to realign the spine, while focusing on the interaction between the biomechanics of the spine and mechanisms of the nervous system. Chiropractic therapy can be paired with other treatments.

Since this form of therapy has to do with the spine, a vital part of your and your pet’s everyday life, only veterinarians accredited in chiropractic treatment or chiropractors should perform direct chiropractic therapies on you and your pet.

To find a certified chiropractic practitioner visit the American Veterinary Chiropractic Association . For chiropractic success stories in pets visit Options for Animals.

Stay tuned for next week when I will explore naturopathy, herbal medicine, Bach flower remedies, and homeopathy.

 

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March 25, 2013

The Most Popular Natural Pet Treatments

Filed under: Holistic Pet Care — Tags: , — 1st Pet Naturals @ 9:00 am

Natural Pet

The word “holistic” is often used interchangeably with homeopathy, naturopathy, natural healing, and herbal remedies. While it is not wrong to refer to these treatments as “holistic,” the treatments don’t accurately define what holistic means.

According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary holistic is defined as:

“Relating to or concerned with wholes or with complete systems rather than with the analysis of, treatment of, or dissection into parts.”

While according to Dictionary.com, holistic means:

“Identifying with principles of holism in a system of therapeutics, especially one considered outside the mainstream of scientific medicine, as naturopathy or chiropractic, and often involved nutritional measures.”

Putting these definitions together and combining them with my existing knowledge, holistic means to look at one’s health as an entire system and to not treat one’s health with artificial treatments (i.e. synthetic drugs). It’s all about creating balance with one’s physical, mental, and emotional health, because an imbalance between these factors is what creates disease.

Stemming from these definitions, “holistic” cannot be considered as just homeopathy or as just herbal remedies. Rather, “holistic” encompasses many treatments that attempt to restore physical, mental, and emotional balance without the use of allopathic medicine.

Over the next two weeks I will describe the most popular holistic pet treatments to you. They are as follows:

• Acupuncture
• Chiropractic Therapy
• Naturopathy
• Herbal Medicine
• Bach Flower Remedies
• Homeopathy

 

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February 26, 2013

Top 5 Poisonous Plant for Pets: Beware

Filed under: Pet Safety Tips — Tags: — 1st Pet Naturals @ 11:00 am

Even if you have a green thumb, you need to keep an eye on your pet when it comes to certain plants. Our pets are a part of our family, so keeping them safe from comPoisonous Plantsmon every-day plants is extremely important.

Here is a list of five plants to keep your pet away from:

1. Buttercups: Though beautiful in your lawn, they are toxic to both dogs and cats. They can lead to depression, vomiting and diarrhea.

2. Carnations: These flowers can result in mild dermatitis or skin inflammation.

3. Apple and apple trees: Their stems contain cyanide that may result in breathing difficulties or your pet going into shock.

4. Avocados: Though this fruit provides health benefits to humans, in horses it can result in colic, in cattle it can result in decreased milk production, and in dogs and cats it can result in vomiting and diarrhea.

5. Cherries: Their stems, leaves, and seeds contain cyanide which can result in your pet going into shock or have difficulty breathing.

You can check out more poisonous plants at ASPCA. If your pet ever ingests any one of these plants, immediately contact your veterinarian or the ASPCA (Animal Poison Control Center) at 888-426-4435.

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February 19, 2013

Top 5 Fun Ways to Lose Weight With Your Pet

Filed under: Cat Weight Loss,Dog Weight Loss — Tags: — 1st Pet Naturals @ 11:00 am

How to lose weightWhether you have a dog or a cat, it is doesn’t have to be boring to lose weight. Whether you just want to keep the weight off, or only want to be healthy, here are a few great tips on how you and your pet can make the most out of every day.

Tip 1: Find fun activities you can do with your pet. Have activities you can do both indoors and outdoors. Alternate the activities to keep every day a new and fun adventure.

For outdoor activities, go out for a run! Try running with your dog along the beach or in a beautiful park. Check out local parks and beaches that are dog friendly. Bring a frisbee or a tennis ball and play catch. During the winter, you can even play catch in the snow.

If your pet prefers the indoors, find a toy that will grab his/her attention. Play with your pet all around the house; don’t just stay in the living room.

Tip 2: Keep cool/warm and keep dry. Be prepared for various types of weather. If you are going to venture outside, be sure that you and your pet are dressed appropriately.

Tip 3: Keep it regular. Have a fixed time and keep a routine. Over time you’ll notice that your pet will get accustomed to a routine and expect it. He/she may even remind you that it is time to exercise and have fun.

Tip 4: Reduce the treats. Stop giving your pet too many treats and snacks. Instead, reward your pet with a toy or with a fun day outside of the house.

Tip 5: Keep an eye on how much you feed your dog. You may want to consider feeding your pet smaller but more frequent meals.

What actions do you take to keep you and your dog fit? Let us know on Twitter, Facebook, or the comment box below.

February 5, 2013

Natural Way to Pet Wellness

Filed under: Holistic Pet Care — Tags: — 1st Pet Naturals @ 11:00 am

Pet wellnessYour pet is very much a part of the family just like your significant other, parents, and siblings. Just like you care about your family’s health and wellness, you are going to care about the health and wellness of your pet. To ensure that your pet is reaching his/her maximum health potential, you must keep track of their physical, mental, and environmental well being.

Physical Health

Exercising is just one of the many ways to create maximum wellness for your pet. Whether it is going out to the park, or going for a run with your dog, your pet deserves to get out and have fun. When your dog is exercising regularly, you will notice that he/she will have a more positive attitude. Although cats are known to be more independent, they also need exercise. Take your cat out and he/she will love you for it!

In addition to exercising, your pet’s diet is just as important. Read up on what you feed your pet. Ask yourself: “Are the big brand named pet foods really going to benefit my pet’s health?” Mass produced pet foods lack in vitamins and nutrition for your pet. Become aware on what nutrients are in your pet’s food, and consider reading up on the benefits of natural pet foods and natural pet supplements. This will ensure that you are well informed on making the best of your furry friend’s health.

Environmental Health

The saying, “Home sweet home,” applies to your pet as much as it applies to yourself. Give your pet a specific area that they can call their own. Create a space for them in which they can rest, stretch, and relax. This can be done by simply laying out a soft blanket or bed in your living room, just for your pet. The both of you value your space at home, so keep it clean. Vacuum your home regularly, or often if your pet sheds, to help reduce ticks and fleas from taking over your house. Keep your floors clean and clear of cluttering objects. When cleaning, try to use natural products in order to avoid excessive toxic chemicals. Perhaps opt for cleaning products with a lavender scent; dogs and cats love the smell of lavender. Remember, your home is your pet’s home too!

Mental Health

The mental health of your pet is vital. It not only affects your pet but it also affects you. Find ways to keep your home stress free. Creating a stress free environment may include having a clean and clutter free home, or it may consist of establishing routines so you don’t get bogged down with household chores.

Keep track of your pet’s moods. If you have a dog, you may have to work harder in ensuring a healthy mental attitude. Dogs are more prone to get depressed and anxious when left alone. Being sociable animals, dogs may become overly dependent on you and your attention. When dealing with anxiety in your dog, it is important to keep a calm environment. Teach your dog how to remain calm and reward them when they show a calm response and attitude. A great way to teach your dog to remain calm is to walk in and out of a room where your dog is, preferably with a door that you can open and shut. Gradually increase the duration that you spend outside of the room. Another way to teach your dog how to remain calm is to turn your back and ignore him/her when they get excited. Remember, keep calm and reward calm.

As for cat owners, well, you can relax a bit. Cats, as many of us know, are more independent and prefer to be alone. However, this is not true for all cats. If your cat does not prefer to be alone, make sure someone is home or nearby if you happen to be away. It is a good option to have friends or family members that can pet-sit.

Owning a pet and looking over their well-being is more than just exercising and ensuring for a healthy diet, it is also about living well. When you take care of yourself and are happy, your pet will feel secure. When you take care of your pet and they are happy, he/she will take care of you.

 

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January 29, 2013

Pet Health: How You and Your Pet Can Stay Fit With Winter at Your Door

Filed under: Cat Weight Loss,Dog Weight Loss — Tags: — 1st Pet Naturals @ 11:00 am

Pet HealthWinter is in full swing. The chilliness and crisp air makes it difficult to not only get into shape, but to stay in shape. With the excuse of, “it’s the holidays,” long behind us, we need to look to the future… the summer. This means getting you and your pet fit. Here are five easy ideas for you to stay active with your pet until the spring rain washes your winter blues away.

Escape your house. Find the right time to take your pet out. Would it be easier to go out in the mornings or after work? Set aside time and establish a routine that works for you and your pet.

Never let the cold get to you. Dress warmly. Not only you, but your pet as well. It will make your trip outside a more comfortable adventure. For those who are fortunate to enjoy warm temperatures all year round, well lucky you, there should be no excuses for the cold.

To jog or not to jog? Not all of us can run marathons or even run around the block without getting tired (I know I can’t). Instead,  find other activities besides jogging, that you can do with your pet, such as a walk or a hike. Hey, why not even have a snowball fight?

Outré? Think extravagant (that’s what outré means in case you are wondering). Getting out and exercising with your pet can be fun, but it depends on your attitude about getting active. If you’re happy and enthusiastic, your pet will be too. Being active doesn’t have to be too serious. Remember, your pet can sense the way you are feeling, and how you feel affects them; so get excited and have fun. Being active doesn’t have to be serious.

Yawn or Yawl. Make it fun. If you and your pet are tired, stop! Exercising is suppose to energise you and your pet. Keep daily activities short, sweet, and fun so you don’t yawn and your pet doesn’t yawl.

Go out and enjoy yourself and remember to be safe. If you feel like you cannot get rid of your winter blues, worry not, summer is on the way.

January 16, 2013

“Red Rover, Red Rover” – We Call Clean Doggy Over

Filed under: Dog Grooming — Tags: — 1st Pet Naturals @ 7:22 pm

grooming your dogWe are recommending DIY dog grooming as a supplement to professional dog groomers – not as a replacement.

Dog groomers put your pet at ease, shampoo and dry with trained efficiency, cut with style, and take on the difficult task of nail trimming.   They also are pet lovers, and have a keen eye for health issues that they pass on to the pet owners.   If you can only afford one grooming per year, let it be the first spring grooming.   You dog will welcome the season with gusto in the hands of a professional!

As much as we love and recommend professional groomers, some pet owners simply can’t afford to pay for professional pet grooming as often as it is needed.  For example, some dogs need weekly grooming, as certain dogs tend to be a magnet for mud.   Here are some tips to ‘pretty up’ the pooch between grooming visits:

Buy a dog grooming kit at the pet store or online.   Be sure to get a kit that is suitable for your dog’s length of fur.

  • Pay a lot of attention to your dog prior to the grooming.   Most dogs should be brushed every other day, so that’s a good place to start.  You can use cornstarch to loosen up any matting.  If you brush regularly, there will be less and less knots.  Cut out any mats that cannot be combed out.
  • Remove any discharge from your dog’s eyes.  If the fur is stained, you can use tear stain remover (can be picked up at any pet store).
  • Wash your dog.   (You will need them to be free of mud, twigs, etc.)  If your dog has long hair, you can move to the cutting phase next.   If your dog is a short-hair, just dry with a towel and you are done.  You can use a blow dryer, but it’s not necessary.
  • Always cut in the direction of your dog’s fur.  It’s important to use slow, even strokes.  If you move faster than the blade can cut, your pet will end up with a choppy look.    One technique is to brush the coat up, and then clip the ends.
  • Use small scissors (groomer’s) to trim between your dog’s toes.   Cleaning up this fur will help keep your pooch from slipping on the floor.
  • Clip your dog’s toe nails. It’s critical that you are very careful, and just trim a little at a time.   If clipping your dog’s toe nails makes you uncomfortable, start by just trimming a tiny bit, and then use a dremel to file them down.
  • Finish up with a treat and lot’s of love!  (Don’t talk about or show the treat before the grooming is complete – dogs are not know for patience!)

We have purposely not addressed the issues of ear cleaning and teeth today.   A dog’s ears are very sensitive, and cleaning can be traumatic for them. Teeth cleaning is very important to your dog’s health as well.   Our holistic vet, Dr. Loridawn Gordon will address these issues in the next couple of weeks.   Please refer to her blog.

As a reminder, do use a groomer from time to time if you can afford it.   They have wonderful, gentle cleansers, are “plugged in” to pet issues and products, and are keen to share their knowledge with their pet loving clients.

January 10, 2013

11 Tips to Help Your Pet Lose Weight with Diet and Exercise

Filed under: Cat Weight Loss,Dog Weight Loss — Tags: — 1st Pet Naturals @ 7:21 pm

Diet and exercise for dogsYesterday we promised to give you some tips to help your Fat Pooch with his/her pouch!  So, we’re going to talk about the dreaded D & E – Diet and Exercise!!

It can be hard to determine if your pet is actually overweight, particularly if your dog is of a heavier set breed.  So ask your vet to do an evaluation of your pet’s height and weight.  Your vet should be able to recommend an ideal weight for your dog at each stage of development. Generally, up to 15% above the optimal weight is considered overweight, and over 15% is considered obese. And, just as you should do for yourself, weigh your pet regularly – once per week or once per month.

While some breeds are more prone to obesity than others, it’s generally us, the owner, that is making our dog fat!  We just can’t resist those puppy dog eyes!!  Below are some key points to consider, beginning with Diet.

  • Keep track of everything your dog eats throughout the day. This includes treats, snacks, biscuits the kids and neighbours give him/her!
  • Try reducing portions.  Your vet may be able to make a recommendation as to how many calories your dog needs to lose and then maintain an ideal weight.
  • Ask your vet about diet dog food.  Look for one that is high in fiber – it will help your dog feel full more quickly.  Introduce it slowly – mixing in small portions with the regular food at first – and gradually increasing.
  • Treats and snacks are o.k. – just don’t overdo it.

Now on to Exercise. It’s common knowledge, and research shows, that when pet owners exercise with their dog, they tend to stick to the program.  And, the benefits of exercise for both you and your dog are numerous!

In addition to burning calories (which helps with weight loss), increased stamina, lower blood pressure, improved muscle tone and bone density, exercise also helps lower the risk of depression and common behavioral problems.

There are several ways to add exercise into your dog’s daily routine – walking, jogging, hiking, cycling, swimming, roller-blading….or simply playing fetch.  You can even set up your own agility obstacle course at a dog park or playground.  Use the benches or some small logs, the swings, teetertollers, and some soft-weight balls or Frisbees to throw around.  Be creative!

Here are some suggestions to keep you on track with your exercise program:

  • Set realistic goals , considering other commitments and obligations in your life such as work, family, etc.
  • Try and set aside a specific time of the day.  Particularly in the summer months, it’s important to run during cooler times of the day, as a dog can’t cool itself down by sweating.
  • Ease into an exercise program with your pet. Begin slowly, and gradually increase your speed, distance, intensity.   And, just like us, pets need a warm up, cardio segment and cool down.  A 5-minute warm-up, followed by 20-30 minutes of cardio, and then a 5-minute cool-down is sufficient.  You can increase the cardio time as you and your pet get fitter.
  • Hydration (lots of water) is important before, during, and after your workout – for both you and your dog.  Short-faced breeds are more susceptible to dehydration, as they tend to not be able to pant efficiently.
  • Modify yours and your dog’s workout if necessary.  Even older pets, or pets with health issues such as lung, heart or inflammation can still exercise with you, with a modified workout. For senior dogs especially, exercise increases strength and flexibility.
  • How do you know if you’re exercising too hard, or not hard enough?  You should be breathing hard, but able to carry on a conversation, and your dog should be panting to some degree.  However, you should not be totally out of breath, and your dog should not be panting excessively.
  • Both you and your dog should consult a health professional before beginning any exercise and diet plan.  Your vet can address any underlying health issues with regards to your dog.

So, the key here is to be aware of what, when and how much you’re feeding your pooch, and find physical activities which you and/or your family can enjoy with your pet!  Trust me, you will be rewarded by how great you both feel…and look!!!

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Disclaimer: 1st Pet Naturals is an education resource, and all information herein is strictly for educational purposes. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure disease, nor is it meant to replace the (prescribed) treatment or recommendations of your veterinarian or healthcare provider. Always inform your veterinarian or healthcare provider of any products that your pet is taking, including herbal remedies and supplements.