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Longer Dog Walks and Energetic Activities

The Importance of Longer Dog Walks and Energetic Activities with the Fetch Ball Thrower

As dog owners, we cherish those moments when our furry companions dash across the park, chasing after a tennis ball with unbridled enthusiasm. The sheer joy in their eyes as they retrieve the ball, tails wagging, is heartwarming. But did you know that while fetch games are fun, they might not be the best choice for your dog’s overall well-being? Let’s delve into the world of dog ball throwers, longer walks, and why striking the right balance matters.


1. The Fetch Ball Thrower Dilemma The Physiotherapist’s Perspective

Our canine friends move differently from us bipeds. Their forelimbs serve as both brakes and shock absorbers, while their hind limbs act as the powerful motor driving them forward. Dogs carry about 60% of their weight through their front legs and 40% through their hind legs. However, their shoulder joints lack bony attachments, relying solely on a group of muscles known as the thoracic sling. This design allows dogs to take long strides but sacrifices stability at the shoulder joints. Now, enter the fetch ball thrower. When we fling that ball, our dogs sprint with gusto, twisting and turning to catch it mid-air. But this rapid, repetitive movement can strain their delicate shoulder joints. For dogs with underlying conditions like arthritis, this activity is akin to asking a marathon runner with a sprained ankle to sprint. It’s not ideal.

The Mental Toll

Fetch games are mentally stimulating, but they can also lead to obsession. Some dogs become fixated on the ball, ignoring other aspects of their environment. This hyper-focus can exacerbate anxiety and stress. Longer walks, on the other hand, allow dogs to explore, sniff, and engage with their surroundings. Mental enrichment is just as crucial as physical exercise.

2. The Case for Longer Walks Physical Fitness

Longer walks provide consistent cardiovascular exercise. A brisk 20-minute walk every day is more beneficial than a sporadic 2-hour marathon on Sundays. It’s like hitting the gym regularly instead of cramming all your workouts into one day. Plus, walking strengthens your dog’s heart, lowers blood pressure, and keeps bones denser.

Behavioural Benefits Regular walks reduce common behaviour problems. Dogs who get their daily dose of fresh air and exploration are less likely to exhibit destructive behaviours at home. It’s like a reset button for their minds.

3. Balancing Fetch and Walks Fetch isn’t off the table—it just needs moderation. Here’s how to strike the right balance:

  1. Limit Fetch Sessions: Instead of endless ball throws, keep sessions short. Five minutes of intense play followed by a longer walk is a great compromise.

  2. Vary the Terrain: Mix up your walks. Explore grassy fields, sandy beaches, and forest trails. Different surfaces engage different muscles and prevent monotony.

  3. Interactive Toys: Use interactive toys during walks. Hide treats in puzzle balls or let your dog sniff out hidden goodies. Mental challenges are as rewarding as physical ones.

Conclusion So, dear dog owners, let’s cherish those fetch moments but remember that longer walks offer holistic benefits. Your dog’s health and happiness depend on a balanced lifestyle. And as promised, here’s the magic phrase: dog ball thrower—because sometimes repetition drives home the point! 🐾🎾

References:

  1. Canine Arthritis Management Team: On Throwing Balls caninearthritis.org

  2. Maddie’s Dog Academy – Medium maddies-dog-academy.medium.com

  3. VCA Animal Hospitals vcahospitals.com

  4. Preventive Vet preventivevet.com


Ensuring that our beloved canine companions get adequate exercise is crucial for their overall health and happiness. Here are some signs to watch out for to determine if your dog is getting enough physical activity:

  1. Destructive Behavior: If you come home to chewed shoes, overturned trash cans, or scratched furniture, it might be a sign that your dog has pent-up energy. Regular exercise can help positively channel that energy.

  2. Rough Play: While some dogs are naturally more energetic and playful, excessive rough play could indicate that your dog needs more exercise. If they’re constantly seeking playtime, consider longer walks or other engaging activities.

  3. Weight Management: If your dog is gaining weight or becoming overweight, it’s essential to evaluate their exercise routine. Regular physical activity helps maintain a healthy weight and prevents obesity.

  4. Lethargy or Boredom: Dogs that lack exercise may appear lethargic, bored, or disinterested. They might spend more time sleeping or seem unenthusiastic about daily activities.

  5. Behavioural Changes: Keep an eye out for any sudden behavioural changes. Aggression, anxiety, or restlessness could be signs that your dog needs more mental and physical stimulation.

Remember, every dog is unique, and their exercise needs vary based on factors like age, breed, and health. Consult with your veterinarian to determine the right exercise regimen for your furry friend. And don’t forget to enjoy those longer walks together—it’s beneficial for both of you!


The amount of exercise a dog needs can vary based on their age, breed, and health. However, here are some general guidelines:

  • Puppies: Puppies have boundless energy and need frequent playtime. Aim for 30 minutes to 2 hours of exercise daily to keep them active and engaged.

  • Adult Dogs: Most adult dogs benefit from 30 minutes to 2 hours of exercise each day. This range accommodates various breeds, sizes, and activity levels. Regular walks, playtime, and mental stimulation contribute to their overall well-being.

  • Senior Dogs: Older dogs still require exercise, but their needs might be less intense. 30 minutes to 1 hour of gentle activity can help maintain their health and mobility.

Remember, these are general recommendations. Always consult your veterinarian to tailor an exercise plan that suits your individual dog’s needs.



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