Whether you are walking, running or playing fetch with your four-legged friend, getting outside and breaking a sweat is a great way to keep you both healthy and happy.
With fitness gear made just for pet-and-human workouts, getting fit with your dog has never been easier or more fun. We asked dog behavior and health experts for their favorite products and tips on how to use them.
1. A short leash or waist leash
Aramburu recommends using a 4 to 6 foot lightweight nylon or leather leash. Once you have got it down, consider a hands-free leash that’s worn around your waist.
2. Martingale collar
This (Martingale collar) type of collar is designed to sit loosely around a dog’s neck, but to tighten when the dog tries to pull on the leash. It gives you more control over your pooch without choking him like a slip collar.
3. Collapsible water dish
Just as you should sip water throughout your workout, so should your dog. “I’ve found that a lightweight, travel dog bowl is the easiest thing to run with,” says Aramburu.
4. Convertible water bottle
If you don’t want to carry a water bottle and a separate dish, go for a bottle that you and your dog can share. You can either buy a special bottle that comes with a removable plastic bowl or buy an attachment for bottles you already have.
5. Lights or reflectors
“Use reflective collars and vests on your dog when running at night for safety,” says veterinarian Susan Nelson, clinical assistant professor at Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas.
6. First-aid kit
Having a few basic medical supplies stored in your car or medicine cabinet can be helpful if your dog gets hurt while you’re out exercising. Stock yours with ointments, bandages, eyewash and antihistamine.
7. Cooling vest
Dogs can overheat quickly in warm weather, especially in the middle of the day when the sun is overhead. Try to exercise in the morning or the evening, but if you do have to be out in the heat with your dog, consider getting her a cooling vest that reflects the sun and uses evaporation to help regulate temperature.
8. Car seat cover
If you drive to and from the park or the trail with your dog, you know that getting home after a particularly muddy romp can be disastrous for your car’s upholstery. A cover in your back seat can keep it clean from dirt and dog hair.