Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Pooches: The Health Benefits of Daily Walks

We know a lot of people feel sorry for city dogs because we don't have backyards, but as our pups have been growing older we've been seeing how beneficial our daily walking routine really is.
We've realized what once seemed like a forced walk, now has been helping our pups through their aging process.

Low-Impact Exercise
People are always surprised to hear our pups are a (spry!) 10 and 11 years old, but we think a lot of it has to do with our Daily Walks. On work days our pups walk about 2 miles while our Family Walks go for 4+ miles. Even though they are older, our pups are used to these distances since we have been walking this much for years. Though in warmer weather we've been taking more breaks.
I'm guessing if we had a backyard our pups might run around for a few minutes, but with our daily walks our pups are forced to walk the whole time. We also know running in the yard would also be harder on their joints while our walking keeps their legs and joints loose. I also imagine Miss M would become a bit more portly if it was left up to her.
Our neighbor had his 2 pit bulls live to be 16 and 17 years old. Even when they were older he would always be outside walking them, even if they were going shorter distances, and he believes it's one of the things that did allow them to live so long.

Mental Stimulation
We've realized how important it is to keep our pups' world big and expose them to new things. The things we encounter on our walks are always changing, and this type of mental stimulation helps 'exercise' their brains to keep their minds sharp. It also keeps them from becoming bored which we know makes for an overall happier dog.

Catching Symptoms Early
Since these walks do allow us to spend much more time with our pups, we become more attuned to them and we are able to catch symptoms and ailments that much earlier. We are also aware of what is going on with their poo at all times.

We have found this helps with our pups and our lifestyles.
What are some other ways you work to exercise your pups, especially as you notice them getting older?

We originally didn't realize the health benefits of this one
Budgeting our time for all-weather walks
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Hannah@Eriesistibull said...

That's definitely one thing I wish we were better about!

We do make sure to clean up after them even when we are just spending time in the yard so we can keep an eye on their health.

We love a good game of flirt pole in the backyard, but I have been thinking that we will have to limit it to only with Edi in the next year or so as Tess is 6.5 -- although she hasn't shown any signs of slowing down!!

Two French Bulldogs said...

We don't understand why some people never take their pups on a walk. Maybe they should consider a cat
Lily & Edward

Anonymous said...

Even though we have a backyard for the pups to hangout in whenever they want we also take them for daily and sometimes twice daily walks. The exercise is good for them and so is the mental stimulation. But, as they are getting older we don't go as fast or as far.

OG said...

Petey and I take a lot more breaks in the park but we're still going strong!

Laura said...

How delightful that Mr. B and Miss M get both physical exercise and mental stimulation to keep them happy and healthy for a long time! We love to walk our pups, and since we do have a backyard, it is nice to spend time outside with them. Our 14 year lab mutt has difficulty with mobility due to her hips, so we have her go out while we get the mail, or other brief outings, so she moves around and keeps active.

2 Punk Dogs said...

Love the pictures, especially the last one of Mr. B!
Now I don't feel so bad for not fencing the yard and always going on leash walks. :)

liliana876 said...

Mental stimulation is very important, and it helps everyone stay young.

While we have a backyard, we do take our dogs out. When at home, each time we let them out we pick up after them.

I truly feel that if it weren't for the cancer, we'd still have Sasha around, and she would have been with us for a long time. But I guess that is what we all imagine :)

Hugs to the pooches, they are so adorable and lovable.

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