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How to keep your dog active in the winter

In the bitter cold of winter, these little guys absolutely cannot stay out for more than a minute or two. And dogs are like us...they eat more in the winter to build the fat they need to keep warm. So how do we keep them from getting overweight?

Although my dogs love to wrestle and chase each other, it's not sustained long enough for them to get a good workout. So I devised a little game where I grab some of their toys, throw them and make them chase the toys throughout the house. I toss it up the stairs, into a different room and across the basement floor. Our oldest loves his toys. God forbid anyone takes one of them because he'll hunt it down until the end of time. Our youngest doesn't give a rip about the toys, unless he's taking one to tease his brother. So the chase scenario works rather well. Our oldest tears after his precious toy and the youngest follows because he wants to grab it first so he can torment his brother with it. The other part of the game is "hiding" the toy. I'll pretend to throw it and then when they go in the direction they think I've thrown it, I'll hide it on them. Well, they'll tear around the house 5 or 6 times before they actually find it. Then they get praise and we do it again.

This is just something I came up with. Other times I'll walk or run up and down the stairs and around the coffee table and from room to room so they chase me. Hey...I could use the exercise too. :-) But the bottom line is you must keep them moving for a period of time to keep their energy levels up and prevent them from becoming overweight and sluggish.

In the summer it's so easy...we take them for walks in the park or let them run on the beach. In the winter, we simply can't because it's too cold. And keeping them active throughout the winter will mean in the spring their walks will be easy for them because they've stayed active through the winter months.


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