Pet Exercise

Exercise for your pet could be additional way to raise your pet naturally and holistically. Physical activity may improve several diseases of your pet starting from arthritis to heart disease, bowel disease to obesity or even depression. 

For example, there was a study showing exercise has clinically proven to help with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) in dogs.

Two veterinarians in Taiwan have documented the benefits in small breed dogs living a sedentary life and suffering from chronic diarrhea of putting them on an exercise regime. Although this was a small study in part inspired by the clinical improvement in human patients suffering from IBD who are able to participate in a regular exercise program, it offers a safe and potentially effective additional therapeutic approach to this all too common canine condition.

Dogs living a sedentary life, rarely aroused and often being trained to evacuate inside especially when living in high-rise apartments, could well lead to longer retention times of fecal material prior to evacuation with resultant inflammation of the bowels, exacerbated by various dietary ingredients and their metabolites with further possible health problems due to bacterial endotoxins. Physical activity may also help improve circulation and help alleviate and prevent lymphangectasia, the accumulation of lymph in the bowels seen in some forms of canine IBD.

Also, the other point: animals with heart disease may become easily tired or weak, and seem to generally have a limited tolerance for activity. Since there is no cure for most forms of heart disease in dogs and cats, the goal is to allow them to exercise enough to enjoy themselves, but no do so much exercise that they get into trouble. Short walks are tolerated by most dogs with heart disease, but excessive activity can worsen heart failure or trigger irregular heartbeats.

For dogs that usually pull on the leash or walk in front of their owners, if they slow down and are now walking along side you then this might be enough (or too much) activity. If dogs fall behind on the leash when going for a walk, or if they sit down and need to rest, then this was clearly too much activity and a shorter walk should be taken in the future. Animals with significant heart disease should not be pushed to exercise beyond their limits. In dogs with previously well controlled heart failure, the onset of reduced ability to exercise should trigger a recheck visit to your veterinarian to see whether changes in treatment or diet can improve control of heart failure.