Puppy parents know their furry friends need a daily dose of exercise for their physical and mental well-being, but winter can bring its own set of challenges when it comes to getting outside – especially if you or your pup prefer the comfort of a cozy couch or bed during colder months!
It’s so important to keep your pup active year-round. Inactivity can lead to a host of issues for dogs, including weight gain and behavioural problems.
Try these expert-approved winter activities with your pup this season to spark your love for winter and find new ways to enjoy the great outdoors together.
Embark on a short (but brisk!) walk
The cold weather might put a damper on your typical long, leisurely walks together, but you can still get enjoyment (and physical benefits!) from short walks at a quicker pace.
Be sure to pay attention to factors like snow, ice and windchill and dress your pet appropriately for the weather. Extreme cold and ice in addition to harsh salts or chemical deicer can be damaging to delicate paw pads. Check out our blog on winter dog grooming for more information about protecting your puppy’s feet and fur during colder months.
Explore a new trail together
If you’re up for it, winter hiking can be a great way to get in daily exercise with your pup. Before you set out on your snowy hiking adventure, be sure you’re both suited up for the occasion and consult your local trail guides to ensure the route is safe and approved for pets.
Keep in mind that some dogs might not be ready to hit the trails – for dogs that tire more easily, like older pups and small puppies, a hike could be too strenuous. Have a good understanding of your dog’s capabilities before embarking on your hike.
Enjoy a puppy playdate in the snow
If your dog enjoys the company of other canine companions, consider planning a puppy playdate. Many dogs can benefit from social interaction, and it’s a great way to burn off energy and get some exercise.
If you’re thinking of planning a puppy playdate, be sure to follow all COVID-19 social distancing recommendations and public gathering restrictions for your area.
Play a game of snowball fetch
If your dog loves to fetch and retrieve – this activity is for you!
No toys readily available? No problem! Snowballs can easily be used for games of winter fetch. Just be sure they’re free of hard ice or harmful salts that can cause damage to your dog’s teeth and mouth.
Create a snowy obstacle course
An obstacle course is a fun and engaging way to get your dog excited about winter play. Set up a series of snowy obstacles for your pup to get them jumping, fetching, crawling, and digging – the options are endless! This activity includes a bit more planning but trust us – it’s totally worth it.
What other winter activities do you love to share in with your pup to keep them entertained and active? Share them with us on social media! Follow along with PuppyViewer on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.