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Unleash the Fun: A Guide to Fulfilling Dog Exercise

Saturday, December 9th, 2023

Just like humans, our canine companions thrive on regular exercise to maintain a healthy and happy lifestyle. From bounding through open fields to playing a spirited game of fetch, dogs revel in the joy of physical activity. In this guide, we’ll explore the importance of exercise for dogs, the various types of activities to keep your furry friend fit, and how to tailor workouts to suit different breeds and energy levels.

The Importance of Dog Exercise:

Regular exercise is essential for a dog’s overall well-being. Physical activity not only helps to maintain a healthy weight but also supports cardiovascular health, strengthens muscles, and promotes mental stimulation. Dogs are natural explorers and hunters, and without an outlet for their energy, they may develop behavioral issues or become bored and restless.

Types of Dog Exercise:

  1. Outdoor Adventures: Dogs are outdoor enthusiasts, and nature provides the perfect playground for them. Take your furry friend on hikes, nature walks, or trips to the dog park. Exploring new scents, sights, and sounds not only provides physical exercise but also engages their senses, offering a holistic experience.
  2. Fetch and Retrieve Games: Classic games of fetch are timeless and highly effective in burning off excess energy. Whether in your backyard or at a designated dog play area, a game of fetch allows your dog to sprint, leap, and use their natural instincts to chase and retrieve.
  3. Agility Training: Agility courses offer a structured and challenging way for dogs to exercise both their bodies and minds. Set up a DIY agility course in your backyard using tunnels, hurdles, and weave poles. Not only does this provide physical exercise, but it also enhances your dog’s coordination and problem-solving skills.
  4. Swimming: Many dogs love the water, and swimming is an excellent low-impact exercise that engages multiple muscle groups. If your dog enjoys water, consider taking them to a dog-friendly beach or a pool. Swimming is particularly beneficial for dogs with joint issues or older dogs who may find other forms of exercise challenging.
  5. Interactive Toys and Games: Incorporate toys that encourage mental and physical stimulation. Puzzle feeders, treat-dispensing toys, and interactive games engage your dog’s brain, offering both a challenge and a reward. These activities are especially beneficial for breeds that thrive on problem-solving.
  6. Jogging or Running: For high-energy breeds, jogging or running is an excellent way to provide a thorough workout. Start with short distances and gradually increase intensity based on your dog’s fitness level. Remember to consider your dog’s age, breed, and any health concerns before starting a running routine.

Tailoring Exercise to Breed and Age:

Different dog breeds have varying energy levels and exercise needs. High-energy breeds, such as Border Collies or Labrador Retrievers, require more intense and frequent exercise sessions. On the other hand, smaller or less active breeds may benefit from gentler activities like short walks or indoor play.

Additionally, the age of your dog influences the type and intensity of exercise. Puppies may have bursts of energy but also need plenty of rest for proper growth and development. Senior dogs may require lower-impact exercises that are easy on their joints.

Dog exercise is more than just a physical requirement; it’s an opportunity to strengthen the bond between you and your furry friend. Whether it’s a brisk jog, a game of fetch, or an adventurous hike, finding activities that cater to your dog’s needs and preferences is key. Regular exercise not only keeps your dog healthy and happy but also provides an avenue for them to express their natural instincts and behaviors. So, unleash the fun, tailor your workouts to suit your dog’s unique characteristics, and embark on a journey of shared joy, well-being, and endless tail wags.

Canis Romanus: Unveiling the Canine Companions of Ancient Rome

Tuesday, December 5th, 2023

Introduction:

As we journey through the annals of history, exploring the grandeur of ancient Rome, it’s fascinating to uncover the often overlooked yet essential role played by our four-legged friends – the dogs of ancient Rome. These canine companions were more than mere animals; they were integral members of Roman households, adding both utility and companionship to daily life. Let’s delve into the diverse roles and breeds that adorned the streets and homes of Rome, supported by historical sources.

The Versatility of Molossian Hounds:

At the heart of Rome’s canine legacy were the Molossian hounds, renowned for their strength and versatility. As documented by ancient Roman writers such as Virgil and Columella, Molossians were prized for their roles in hunting and guarding. The famous Roman poet Virgil, in his work “Georgics,” extolled the virtues of these powerful dogs in the context of agriculture, praising their ability to protect livestock from predators. Columella, a Roman agricultural writer, detailed the use of Molossians in guarding estates and homes in his treatise “De Re Rustica” (On Agriculture).

Laconian Dogs: Guardians of Strength and Loyalty:

Similar to the Molossian hounds, Laconian dogs were celebrated for their strength and loyalty. Historian and philosopher Plutarch, in his work “Parallel Lives,” compared the Laconian dog to the Molossian, emphasizing their robust nature. These dogs were not only hunting companions but also served as guardians, ensuring the safety of Roman households.

Swift Greyhounds in the Chase:

The pursuit of leisure and the thrill of the chase were integral to Roman culture, and dogs played a crucial role in these activities. While specific historical sources may not explicitly mention greyhounds, the appreciation for swift and agile dogs in hunting is evident in Roman art and literature. Mosaics from Pompeii, such as those found in the House of the Tragic Poet, depict scenes of hunting where dogs, likely including greyhounds, are shown participating in the pursuit of game.

Small Companions in Roman Homes:

Artistic representations from Pompeii provide glimpses into the lives of Romans with smaller canine companions. Though specific breeds are not detailed in historical records, the mosaics depict scenes of Romans enjoying the company of smaller dogs as affectionate companions. These dogs likely played a role in providing emotional support and camaraderie within Roman households.

Religious Significance: Dogs in Roman Rituals:

Dogs held a special place in the religious practices of ancient Rome. In the cult of Diana, the goddess of the hunt, dogs were considered sacred animals. The inclusion of dogs in rituals, as observed in various archaeological findings and documented by scholars like Mary Beard in her book “The Roman Triumph,” highlights the spiritual connection Romans believed existed between humans and their canine companions.

Conclusion:

As we unravel the tales of Canis Romanus, the dogs of ancient Rome, historical sources offer valuable insights into the roles and relationships forged between humans and their canine companions. From the strength of Molossian hounds to the loyalty of Laconian dogs, the agility of greyhounds, and the affection of smaller companions, dogs were woven into the fabric of Roman society. These historical connections remind us that the bond between humans and dogs has deep roots, transcending time and civilizations. Canis Romanus, with its varied breeds and roles, left an enduring mark on the pages of history, reminding us of the timeless companionship shared between man and his loyal canine friend.

[Link 1]: Virgil’s “Georgics” [Link 2]: Columella’s “De Re Rustica” [Link 3]: Plutarch’s “Parallel Lives” [Link 4]: Mosaics from Pompeii [Link 5]: Mary Beard’s “The Roman Triumph”

Unleash the Fun: Exploring Charleston’s Most Dog-Friendly Parks

Tuesday, December 5th, 2023

Charleston, South Carolina, known for its historic charm and Southern hospitality, is also a haven for our four-legged friends. With its mild climate and welcoming community, Charleston offers a plethora of dog-friendly parks where your furry companions can stretch their legs, make new friends, and enjoy the great outdoors. In this blog post, we’ll guide you through the most dog-friendly parks in Charleston, ensuring both you and your canine companion have a paw-some time.

  1. James Island County Park: A Paradise for Pups Nestled on James Island, this sprawling county park is a canine haven. James Island County Park features expansive green spaces, walking trails, and even a designated off-leash dog park. The Bark Park, as it’s aptly named, is divided into small and large dog sections, allowing for safe and enjoyable playtime. With its lakes, marsh views, and open fields, James Island County Park is an ideal spot for a day of outdoor adventure for both you and your dog.
  2. Palmetto Islands County Park: A Natural Retreat Located in the heart of Mount Pleasant, Palmetto Islands County Park is a hidden gem for dog lovers. The park boasts scenic trails surrounded by lush foliage, providing a refreshing escape for both you and your furry friend. The off-leash dog park is a popular spot for socializing, with separate areas for small and large dogs. The park’s picturesque lakeside setting adds an extra layer of serenity to your pup’s playtime.
  3. Hampton Park: Historic Beauty Meets Canine Playtime Nestled in the historic district of downtown Charleston, Hampton Park is not only a beautiful destination for history enthusiasts but also a delightful retreat for dogs. The park’s expansive green lawns and well-maintained walking paths make it an inviting space for leisurely strolls with your pup. While dogs should remain on a leash, the serene atmosphere and charming surroundings make Hampton Park a favorite for locals and visitors alike.
  4. Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park: Coastal Bliss for Dogs Overlooking the picturesque Charleston Harbor, the Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park offers a scenic setting for a day out with your dog. While dogs should be on a leash, the waterfront views and well-maintained pathways make for an enjoyable walk. The park’s central location, with nearby pet-friendly restaurants, ensures that your pup’s day out is complemented by a variety of dining options for both you and your furry friend.
  5. Wannamaker County Park: Adventure Awaits Situated in North Charleston, Wannamaker County Park is a vast expanse of greenery that beckons both two-legged and four-legged visitors. The park features a designated off-leash dog park with separate areas for small and large dogs. With wooded trails, open fields, and even a lake, Wannamaker County Park offers a diverse range of environments for your dog to explore.

Conclusion: Charleston, SC, has embraced its canine residents and visitors by providing a variety of dog-friendly parks. From off-leash play areas to scenic walking trails, these parks offer the perfect blend of adventure and relaxation for both you and your furry companion. So, leash up your pup and explore the charm of Charleston’s most dog-friendly parks, creating memories that will last a lifetime.

The Benefits of Walking Your Dog

Tuesday, July 13th, 2021

When you say, “It’s time to walk the dog,” many people assume that your pup needs to go do his “business”. Yes, walking the dog is essential to keeping the household carpet unblemished, but taking a stroll with your pooch provides many other benefits.

How does walking keep my dog healthy?image 12

Walking your dog is a simple task that has a positive impact on many aspects of overall health such as:

Weight and Body Condition. Obesity is a major health issue, but barring medical complications, it has a reasonable solution: burn more calories than consumed. Regular exercise, like walking, is a good way to burn those excess calories and keep the pounds off – for both you and your dog.

Joint Health. Immobility is another common health problem. Joints, even old ones, need to work. People and pets get stiff when sedentary for too long, and keeping joints in motion improves their function.

Digestive and Urinary Health. Regular walking helps regulate the digestive tract. Some dogs, like some people, prefer to “go” on a schedule, and providing your dog with routine trips outdoors prevents constipation. Also, when urine sits in the bladder for long periods of time, bladder infections are more likely to occur, so regular emptying keeps this part of the anatomy happy as well.

Of course, it is important to consult your doctor and your veterinarian before embarking on an exercise program.

Can’t my dog get all of those benefits with a good run around the yard?

There are plenty of benefits to walking that go beyond physical health including:

Mental Health. Dogs do not like to be bored and if you give them something constructive to do, like taking a walk, they may be less likely to do something destructive, like chewing the couch. Walking exercises the mind as well as the body. Watching wildlife, exploring new paths, seeing other people with their pets, and so on, are great mental stimulation for your dog that he just cannot get in the same fenced area all the time. Walking also releases excess energy and helps dogs sleep better at night.

Emotional Health. You are the center of your dog’s universe and he craves your attention. What better way to spend quality time with your dog than taking a walk? Spending one-on-one time with your dog will deepen your bond and help deter annoying, attention- seeking behaviors such as excessive barking or whining.

Personal Health. Many people need outside motivation to work out, and may depend on an exercise buddy to get them off the couch. What happens when your exercise partner gets stuck at work or stuck in traffic or has another commitment? Your dog is only committed to one thing… you! That makes him the perfect exercise partner. He is always available and willing to accompany you on a walk.

Dog walkers: healthier people with healthier dogs

As you can see, regular walking has health benefits for both you and your dog and will help prevent obesity, which is a significant problem in both species.

Nearly 75% of Americans are overweight and childhood obesity is on the rise (close to 20%). In a 2008 study based in Seattle and Baltimore, adults who regularly walked their dogs were less likely to be obese than their non dog-owning neighbors. In addition, walking for 30 minutes a day will reduce the risk of coronary heart disease, osteoporosis, colon and breast cancer, and type-2 diabetes.

“It is estimated that about 50% of dogs in the United States are overweight and 25-30% of dogs are obese.”

Canine obesity is a problem, too. It is estimated that about 50% of dogs in the United States are overweight and 25-30% of dogs are obese. The fact is, obese dogs do not live as long as lean dogs. Plus, they suffer more heart problems and joint ailments that affect their quality of life. While it is true that dogs may exercise themselves if left in a fenced-in yard, like us, they have a tendency to plop down in the shade instead of romping, especially if there is no one to play with. However, if given the chance, they will gladly go for a walk with their owners!

How much should we walk?image 13

According to the World Health Organization, children 5-17 years old should accumulate at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous (aerobic) exercise every day. Adults 18-64 years old should engage in moderate exercise for 30 minutes 5 days a week and engage in strengthening exercises at least twice weekly. Seniors over 65 should also participate in moderate exercise 5 days a week, engage in strengthening exercise 2 or more days a week, and add flexibility and balance routines at least 3 days a week.

Walking your dog is a great start to fulfilling these recommendations for you and your family, and leads to a healthy, happier dog!

How do we get started?

Many people make a New Year’s resolution to exercise. What can you do to stick to your resolution? Make a reasonable exercise plan that does not overwhelm you by including your best exercise buddy. Formulating a reasonable walking schedule that does not over tax your body or crowd your busy schedule will help you stay on target and including your dog will motivate you to get going.

“Keep the routine interesting by walking in different areas that provide visual interest for both you and your dog.”

Start out slowly by taking a few 10 minute practice walks around the neighborhood. When you – and your dog – are ready, increase the time and distance. Try to walk for a total of 30 minutes each day – it doesn’t have to be all in one outing. You can take a 10 minute walk in the morning before work and add a 20 minute stroll when you get home. On weekends, you can vary the routine, perhaps doing three 10 minute sessions. Regardless of the schedule, strive for 30 minutes of daily exercise.

Keep the routine interesting by walking in different areas that provide visual interest for both you and your dog. Or substitute a game of fetch or a romp in the park if you feel up to it. The goal is to make exercise a priority that holds a scheduled spot in each day so that you feel less likely to avoid your plan. It will not take long for your dog to get used to the routine and he may remind you when it is time to exercise. That is just one reason why canines are great exercise companions!

Dog owners who like to mark their progress can download a walking calendar or exercise app or use one of an electronic tracking device that record daily steps and caloric history (calories consumed vs. burned). Sometimes seeing the numbers provides additional motivation to walk a little further or validates your efforts when you reach your goal.

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Dog Friendly Activities in Charleston, SC

Tuesday, July 13th, 2021

There are 67 dog friendly activities in Charleston. Use the links below to get an overview of each one, see pictures, print directions, and even read reviews from other dog owners. Coming from out of town? Get a discounted rate on pet friendly hotels in Charleston.

James Island County Park, Charleston, South Carolina from ...
Dogs Having Fun at James Island County Park

See more at BringFido.com…

5 Ways To Keep Your Dog Healthy This Spring

Monday, February 12th, 2018

Longer days, warm weather, and weekends spent frolicking with your furry friends all mean one thing–spring is here! As we emerge from our winter hibernation and prepare our yards, gardens, and home for the upcoming months, we don’t want to forget our pets. Increasing temperatures also mean the return of several health threats to our dogs and cats. Use this simple guideline to help make the blue skies and sunshine as fun and safe as possible.

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Cold Weather Pet Safety

Wednesday, January 17th, 2018

You’re probably already aware of the risks posed by warm weather and leaving pets in hot cars, but did you know that cold weather also poses serious threats to your pets’ health?

Here are some tips to keep your pets safe during cold weather:

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6 Summer Snacks For You and Your Dog

Tuesday, July 12th, 2016

As summer approaches, nobody wants to spend a lot of time in a hot kitchen, so what do you do when you want something quick and healthy that you and your dog can share?

Check out our collection of quick and easy dog- and people-friendly recipes that are perfect for picnic outings or cooling down on a hot day. Read More…