Friday, June 27, 2014

FitDog Friday: Hiking Fun

One way that Chewy stays a fit dog is by going hiking. It's like walkies, but better, because there are so many different smells! We like to go to nature preserves and national parks to explore (and sniff) their hiking trails. They are usually nice and clean with well-maintained paths, so I don't have to worry about Chewy being tempted by some smelly garbage along the way, or cutting his paw pads on broken glass or bottle caps.

Reading some trail pee-mail

Hot on a scent!

One way to get even more exercise on a hike is to look for obstacles. Chewy likes to climb boulders, logs and stairs. Sometimes, we need to show him the best path for getting on/off, or else he just stands there looking helpless.

I'm king of the world!

We also practice jumping over logs in campfire areas that people usually use for sitting. He usually needs a running start before a jump, otherwise he just stops short.

Obstacles make the hike more fun and interesting, adding excitement and variation to a regular stroll.

Changing pace can also make the hike more enjoyable for your dog. Chewy loves to feel the wind in his fur, but sometimes likes to slow down and smell the flowers. Be sure to watch out for things you might trip over while running- some places will mark them with bright paint.

Always remember to bring water (and a doggy bowl) on your hike to keep hydrated, especially in warm weather.

Be aware of the signs of overheating in your dog, which may include:
- heavy panting
- excessive drooling
- staggering
- bright red tongue
- increased pulse + heartbeat
- elevated body temperature

Staying hydrated and taking breaks in the shade will help prevent overheating. Do not force your dog to keep walking if he/she wants to rest. Chewy will seek out a shady spot to lie down if he wants to take a break, and sometimes will dig a shallow hole to make the ground even cooler. A quick way that Chewy cools off is by lounging in water at the beach or pool, but you can also pour some cool (not cold) water over your dog.

Don't forget to clean up after your dog. It will help keep the trails clean, and won't attract poop-scavenging animals to the area.

Following the rules

Lastly, do a tick check after a hike to make sure none of those buggers have latched onto your furry friend for a free meal. Ticks can spread lyme disease, which may become very dangerous for your dog. Consult your veterinarian for proper prevention, treatment and evaluation of tick bites.

Happy (and safe) hiking!

In other news, we recently won a male vs. female doggy guessing game over at SlimDoggy and received a SlimDoggy bandana! Here is Chewy modeling it:

I look so fresh and so clean!

A close-up...I probably should have pressed out the creases from shipping first, huh?

Epic drool! (Because of meatball bribe)

Thanks, SlimDoggy, for the super cute bandana! It is going back in the cabinet until summer is over, because Chewy + summer = swimming and rolling in the grass/dirt all day, and it would turn black! Or smell like wet dog forever.

We are joining the FitDog Friday hop hosted by SlimDoggy,
Peggy's Pet Place and To Dog with Love.


  1. Great use of your surrounding to make a nature walk a fitness hike. Wonderful photos and great new bandana.

  2. Chewy - you look so handsome in your bandana...going to have to post that photo on our FB page! We love obstacle courses too and love just making them up as we go along like you! Well done.

  3. Looks like a fun hike! We always have to help Harley on and off obstacles just like that - Maybe the caution is a Golden Retriever thing :)

  4. Oh Chewy! such a Golden, gotta jump and that Drool :-) Oh so glad you Dad #ScoopThatPoop. Golden Woofs

  5. You really make hiking into so much fun and great exercise for looks like he is having such a great time. That is all great advice that you shared. Our beagle doesn't like to drink water out of a container when we go on long walks or hikes, so I will often just splash a little water on her head to at least cool her down some. I've also put chicken broth in the water to make it more attractive. We also have some great water bottles called H20 for K9's that have a cover they can drink out of!

  6. This time of year we have to drive a couple of hours to find trails cool enough to hike on. Harlow likes to climb too!

    Monty and Harlow

  7. Stop by our blog on Friday - Momma has nominate you for the Shine On award!

    Monty and Harlow