How to Exercise your Pit Bull
April 14, 2016, Training Tips, Taurus Dog Training
Exercising your dog is an important part of your relationship with him. All dogs, young and old, benefit from exercise, not only physically but mentally as well. A dog that doesn’t get enough exercise will not only run the risk of developing health issues like obesity and arthritis, but may also develop some behavioral issues. Dogs who aren’t given something constructive to do with their time will make their own fun, which normally includes digging, chewing, and even pushier behaviors, like excessive play biting, jumping, and attention-seeking barking. If the aforementioned issues weren’t enough to get you and your pooch off the couch and out the door, exercise can also help shy and fearful dogs gain confidence.
Pitbulls are a high-energy breed and thus require lots of exercise. A huge benefit of owning such an intelligent and active breed is discovering new activities for the two of you to do together. Below are a few ideas on how to keep your Pitbull happy, healthy, and out of trouble!
Running and walking are both great ways to burn some of that Pitbull energy, and the difficulty level can be easily adjusted to best suit your dog’s age and individual exercise needs. Pitbulls have a lot of muscles and running and walking are both great ways to tone those muscles. An added benefit of getting your Pitbull out for a walk or a run is the socialization. Getting your fur baby out in public helps them come to enjoy being exposed to different people, places, and things. Don’t forget to keep treats handy whenever you’re exposing your dog to novel experiences!
Fetch and frisbee are two more exercise options to keep your Pitbull partner happy and healthy. Both tap into a Pitbull’s natural inclination to run and jump, and give them a positive outlet for it. Some dogs intrinsically know how to retrieve, while others have to be taught. If you have a dog that just isn’t going for the ball or frisbee, try rubbing some hotdog (or other stinky treat) on it to entice them to pick it up. Once your dog is showing interest in the toy, start by only throwing it a small distance from you. If you immediately toss the ball too far away, a dog not normally motivated by fetch will not likely want to chase after it. Once your dog is both showing interest in the ball and running a short distance to get it, you can start teaching him to release the ball when he brings it back to you. The most important thing about fetch is to immediately toss the ball again after your dog returns it to you; this way, he is getting an instant reward (the ball being thrown) for the proper action he is performing (dropping the ball at your feet).
Agility is many dog owners’ exercise of choice. If you are looking for an activity to bond you and your dog, exercise his body and mind, and decrease behavioral issues, agility might be for you. Like fetch, you will want to start small with agility. Start with easier obstacles and lure your dog through them with some stinky treats. Once they come to master the easier obstacles, you can up the difficulty. If agility is something that interests you or to find an agility club near you, you can find out more about it by visiting American Kennel Club Agility.
Some Pitbulls are couch potatoes and some are like little energizer bunnies. Wherever your dog falls on that spectrum, he will benefit from some mental and physical exercise. You might even enjoy it, too!
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