Just as exercise is an important aspect for healthy living in humans, so is it to pets. In order for your pet to be active, exercising should be encouraged every now and again. Cats may not require long continuous exercise like dogs as they have differing levels of energy. Here are some benefits that come with exercising your pet:
Creating a stronger bond
Taking walks together gives you and your dog a one on one interaction that brings you even closer. It is a fun activity where your dog can feel jovial with the change of environment from the monotony of the house. Taking your dog for walks also gives him an opportunity to interact with other dogs. This is especially important for puppies as they tend to learn and observe the behavior of older dogs. With this outdoor activity comes a lot more respect and affection between you and your dog.
Take an example of a dog that is confined to the owner’s backyard. Every strange scent and sound excites him but the limitation of movement is unbearable. When any person, vehicle, or animal passes by, your dog gets excited because this is something new for him. The dog jumps up and down along the fence as he hauls and barks to get the attention of the stranger passing by. If you however let your dog out for walks in different environments, such behavior can be done away with. These walks kill the monotony of confinement in the same environment and the boredom that comes with it.
Obesity is a condition that affects pets just like it does humans. Pets that do not exercise often tend to eat and lazy around, being inactive. To avoid this condition, exercise and good diet should be administered on a regular basis. Veterinarian experts agree that without regular exercise and controlled diets; pets may develop health issues relating to obesity as they age. In cats, for example, it is easy to determine whether your cat is underweight, overweight or is the averagely right weight by feeling on their ribs. If it is easier to see or feel the ribs, then your cat is underweight. If the ribs are barely felt, your cat may just be on the edge of becoming obese. On the other hand, if your cat’s ribs are felt just under a layer of muscle, you cat may be in the best shape.
Lack of exercise may lead to diseases such as diabetes, heart and respiratory complications. A cat that is not exercised will become obese and this is, more often than not, associated with diabetes. Lungs will have to work harder since the obese cat will require a lot of air intake while performing activities such as a short run. This in turn affects the heart which needs to pump blood to the lungs faster to provide the used up oxygen. Arthritis is also a disease that affects the joint of pets that stay too inactive. Cats that belong to the elderly, for example, may develop arthritis easily since their owners are too weak themselves to exercise them. Exercise therefore is a big preventive measure for most diseases in pets.
Creating good behavior
Exercising your put redirects pent up energy into good use rather than destructive activities. Pets generally act up out of pure boredom and/ or stress. Exercising your dog can be very helpful in curbing disastrous activities such as chewing on furniture or digging up holes in your yard. Cats on the other hand need to be distracted with exercise so as to avoid unspeakable acts such as self-mutilation and too much licking of their fur. Excessive barking and mewing is related to inactiveness in both dogs and cats respectively. The energy they contain need to be let out through regular exercise so as to avoid unnecessary hyperactivity.
Building up confidence
Exercise in humans makes them feel good. It makes them grow stronger and healthier both physically and mentally. This is the same case when dealing with pets. Exercise promotes confidence by eliminating stress and anxiety in pets. Cats will become social around visitors in your home without a fuss. Dogs on the other hand will learn to outgrow their shyness and instead become more jovial and less hesitant to going out.
Breathing fresh air
Every living creature appreciates and openly relies on adequate fresh air exposure. Pets require open air that is found outside the walls of your house. Taking your dog out for walks, which is part of exercise, exposes him to fresh air. Proper circulation of clean air aids in proper heart functioning as well as improves the pets’ respiratory system.
Cats, being part of the cat family, are natural hunters. They are a valuable resource to your household in case of the presence of mice. Cat exercising includes playful teasing that involves tying a toy to a fishing-rod like pole using a string. Move the toy in motions that mimic insects, bird or drag them along the floor to mimic a mouse. This playful exercise is interesting to your cat, making her jump up and down, exercising her limb muscle as well as her concentration. Be sure to let your cat capture the “hunt” to avoid lose of interest in the game. Your cat will have better hunting skills to capture and/ or scare off mice (if present in your house) as well as improved limb muscles.
Better sleeping habits
Exercising your pet promotes proper outlet of in built energy. With your pet having “worked out” enough to get tired, healthy rest will be easy to achieve. You will realize that your cat or dog will sleep without major distraction and without having to whine and act up when you are also having your rest. Sufficient exercise greatly contributes to better sleeping habits for your pet.
It is important to consider exercise as a fundamental aspect of the healthy growth of your pet and should not be undermined for any reasons whatsoever. A healthy pet equals a happy owner.