As all dog lovers know, sharing an outdoor experience with a pup is the icing on the cake of any outing. Dogs have a way of both reflecting and magnifying our joy: the more fun they have, the more fun they have were having. But to achieve that human-canine bliss, you need to set her up for success. Every time you increase your dog’s activity level, be sure to give him enough and give him the right ingredients.
To help you start summer off on the right foot (or paw), we first compiled our favorite outdoor activities for dogs, then spoke to Dr. Darcia Kostiuk. Dr. Kostiuk has been a veterinarian for over two decades and is currently the lead veterinarian at ORIJEN® pet food. While we’ve broken down his advice to correlate with tits various activities, it should be noted that you will want to practice all of these nutritional tips to achieve a balanced diet. Moreover, any dog, whatever its the activities he does, can benefit from a better diet. Simply put, a healthy dog is a happy dog. And happy dogs have more fun.
Hiking and backpacking
Hiking with a dog is a perfectly symbiotic arrangement: you’ll be able to share new sights and smells, and she’ll be able to share her boundless enthusiasm and make you feel like you’re talking to yourself a little less. the trail.
Before taking your pup on a hike, check the park or land manager’s website to make sure dogs are allowed. Talk to your veterinarian before any extended backpacking trip. If dogs are allowed off leash, make sure yours is trained to come when called and will not chase bikes or wildlife. And, as always, don’t forget to pick up after your pup.
Fill up on protein
Long-distance hikers tend to stick to three main food groups: sweets, ramen, and instant mashed potatoes. But unlike the average dust bag, your pup needs a little more substance to stay fueled for long days on the trail. This is because dogs are optional carnivores. In other words, they work best when a higher percentage of their nutrients come from protein and fat.
“If a dog is very active, the need for specific nutrients like protein increases,” said Dr Kostiuk. “If dogs are unable to extract enough protein through their diet, their bodies can break down their own proteins. [from muscle] be able to support their normal bodily functions. To prevent this from happening, says Dr. Kostiuk, it is essential to include high-quality protein, and this can come from nutritious animal products like red meat, fish, or poultry. Before buying dog food, check that the top five ingredients are animal products like these.
For those who love to run, there’s nothing better than sharing that love with a dog. For those who don’t… well, there’s no more motivating running partner than an enthusiastic pup. Health bonus: switching from sidewalks to trails reduces impact stress on your dog’s joints (and yours).
Before you start running with your dog, make sure he’s leash trained and consider getting a hands-free leash. Most experts also recommend waiting until your puppy is done growing.eng. This is usually between one and one and a half years, but dogs vary, so ask your vet to be sure.
As optional carnivores, dogs consume more protein for fuel than humans. But that doesn’t mean they don’t need carbs anymore, says Dr. Kostiuk. This is certainly true for prolonged high-output activities like running.
Look for dog foods that contain complex carbohydrates and different types of fiber. ORIJEN® The Amazing Grains recipe, for example, includes oats, quinoa, millet, and chia, all of which work as prebiotics for gut health, both promoting satiety and supporting a diverse gut microbiome.
Water sports are among the best ways to keep your dog active during the summer without the risk of overheating. You can do something as structured as formal Dock Jumping competitions (a staple of county fairs) or as simple as taking your dog lakeside with a few tennis balls.
Digestive support for dogs
Have you ever tried sprinting with indigestion? Not a good time. Like you, your dog will enjoy fast exercise more if he receives a nutritious, easily digestible diet. Research is just beginning to scratch the surface of how nutrition affects dogs’ gut microbiomes, but Dr. Kostiuk says dogs definitely benefit from a diet that offers digestive support.
“A balance of insoluble and soluble fiber is very important for the health of a dog’s digestive tract,” says Dr. Kostiuk. “These fibers are also a source of nutrients for the gut microbiota, which help maintain a healthy gut.” Do you remember the Amazing Grains mix mentioned earlier by Dr. Kostiuk? These premium ingredients are two for one: millet, quinoa, oats, and chia also contain high-quality fiber to support balanced digestion.
If you love teaching your dog to sit and stay, you might be ready for the next level: agility training. Agility is a competitive sport in which dogs are trained to jump, crawl and navigate around obstacles. It’s great exercise for you and even better exercise for your pup.
Not sure your dog likes to jump over objects? Fear not: at this point in history, we humans have created almost as many sports for dogs as we have created for ourselves. From sheep herding trials and Barn Hunt (an event that challenges dogs to detect fake rats in bales of hay) to choreographed dancing, dog sports run the gamut from practical to whimsical. Do a quick search online or check out local trainers to find out what’s available near you.
Moisturizer for agility sports
Proper hydration is important no matter what you do with your dog, but brisk exercise, especially in open fields where there is little shade, can put your dog at increased risk of overheating in hot weather. Always have a water bottle and bowl with you and take regular breaks to make sure your dog has a chance to drink. And, of course, be sure to provide your dog with the protein, carbohydrates and digestive support he needs to refuel and recover before and after training.
Camping and more
Everything we do is better with our dogs, and the healthier and happier our dogs are, the more joy we have to gain.
With that in mind, it’s always important to bring the right gear, even for something as simple as a road-camping trip. This includes bowls, leash, bed and cleaning bags. And it’s still essential to make sure your dog gets all the vitamins, minerals and macronutrients he needs from a balanced diet so he can look and perform his best.
Vitamins and minerals for all outdoor activities
Humans get vitamins, minerals and healthy fats by eating a diverse diet of whole foods. Dogs are different. They get essential nutrients from organ meats and other high-quality animal ingredients. “Essential vitamins found in organs play a critical role in canine metabolism,” Dr. Kostiuk said. said. The next time you buy dog food, look for recipes that include organ meats as well as protein from poultry, fish or red meat. ORIJEN® pet food, for example, incorporates every part of the animal, from muscle meat to organs, giving your dog all the nutrients he needs.
ORIJEN® pet food is packed with premium animal-derived ingredients to help dogs and cats thrive and is rich with the same food their ancestors ate in the wild. ORIJEN Amazing Grains™ is the NEW range of grains featuring quality, balanced animal protein with a blend of hand-selected grains. At 38% protein, it has one of the highest percentages of protein in a kibble containing grains, and about 90% of that protein comes from animal ingredients.