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Top 5 Winter Activities for You & Your Dog

12:55 PM, Nov 21, 2013   |    comments
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The weather is getting colder, the days are getting shorter, and all we want to do is curl up by the fireplace, but our dogs are ready to hit the cold weather "paws" first! Unfortunately, finding fun things to do with our dogs in cold weather can be a challenge.

No worries! I've got that covered. Check out my top five ideas, and let me know what you think.

Skijoring

Skijoring is a fun winter activity, where a dog pulls a person on skis! Although northern breeds are the best for winter activities, don't discount other high energy breeds like Pointers, Retrievers, Shepherds, Collies, Pitbulls, and many more.

What You Will Need: Cross-country skis, a skijoring harness (dog), and a dog that is happy to run!

Sledding

No, you don't have to move to Alaska to participate in this fun activity! Even if you have a basic sled, you can keep this winter sport safe and simple by working your dog and using them to pull the sled around or just running along the side of you. You can even get creative and build your own sled.

What You Will Need: Sled, harness, and a dog that loves to pull!

Snowshoeing

This is a great winter activity for the slower pace pet-parent and their dog. Slap on some snowshoes, grab your dog, and start exploring! Visit your local trails, public golf course, or a park.

What You Will Need: Snowshoes, harness, and a dog that is ready to explore!

Hiking

Take in the scenery with this wonderful winter activity. You and your dog will enjoy trekking the different trails around your city, enjoying the winter sounds, smells, and scenery.

What You Will Need: Boots, Backpack (for dog), harness, and a dog that is ready to work!

Check Out Local Dog Events

Check your local city's event listings to find fun winter events that include your dog. Many local humane societies and rescue organizations host events throughout the year to raise awareness about adoptable pets. Get creative and craft your own event to raise money for these organizations, like a "winter wonderland" walk-a-thon or a Chillin' Chili Cookoff! This is a great way to meet other dog-loving pet-parents and give dogs an opportunity to meet new fur friends!

What You Will Need: Friends with Dogs

What would you add to this list?

Some Tips:

Always take into consideration your dog's age and health. With any exercise program, it is important that your dog gets the "green light" from their vet.

Also, it is important during winter activities that you protect your dog's paws (consider booties) and their body (some dogs may require a fleece coat to keep them warm). Hyporthermia and frostbite are dangerous; it is important to monitor your dog during your activities.

Don't forget about yourself! Wearing warm, protective gear is imperative to help prevent any discomfort for you too!

If you have an active dog that enjoys outdoor activities, don't get too cozy in front of the fireplace. Grab your gear, grab Fido, and enjoy the wondrous winter wonderland just outside your door!

Courtesy: Victoria Swanson, www.smartlivingnetwork.com/pet-behavior/b/Top-5-Winter-Activities-For-You-and-Your-Dog

 

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