Woman running with her dog.

What do great Danes, Yorkshire terriers, Siamese cats, and humans have in common? We all need regular exercise! If you struggle to give your pet—and yourself—enough daily exercise, the team at Bayside Animal Hospital has top pet exercise best pet exercise routines and tips to share. Let’s explore the health benefits of pet exercise together as we stroll into the summer months. 

Health Benefits of Pet Exercise 

Some pets need more exercise than others. You wouldn’t try to run a half-marathon with a French bulldog or a cat, for example. They’ll do fine with a short daily walk around your neighborhood or an energetic play session with you. Other pets, like German shepherds and labrador retrievers, need between 45 minutes to 1.5 hours of exercise a day.

Pets (and humans!) that get daily exercise enjoy all kinds of health benefits, including: 

  • Lower blood pressure
  • Strong bones
  • Reduced stress
  • Lower risk of obesity and arthritis
  • Cardiovascular fitness
  • Reduced risk of heart and organ disease

If you feel stuck when it comes to making sure your pet gets exercise, we have some fresh ideas to share with you. 

Top Pet Exercise Tips

1. Take Your Pet for a Walk

We know you’ve heard all about the benefits of dog walking. But it’s truly one of the easiest ways to make sure you and your pet get the daily dose of movement you need. All it takes is a leash, a pair of sneakers, and the motivation to get out the door. 

If you feel so busy that you can’t possibly fit a walk into your day, start small. Shorter walks are easier on your pet’s joints, anyway. Set a timer on your phone to walk for just 10 minutes. Bring a bag for doggie doo-doo and treats to help Fido or Kitty walk happily on a leash. Yes, we said kitty. Cats can walk on leashes, too! 

Make a goal to build the fitness you need to hike one of our beautiful trails here in Granite Bay. Before long, your pet will expect that daily walk—and weekly hike. And you simply can’t say no to those big, gooey eyes, now, can you? 

We recommend getting your pet the rattlesnake vaccine before heading out on any hiking trails. 

2. Visit a Dog Park

If your pup plays well with others, take her to a dog park to meet a new friend. There’s nothing like watching dogs romp and play together—and they’ll get their daily exercise in, too!

We love the Hughes Park Off-Leash Dog Park in Roseville, the Ashley Off-Leash Dog Park in Auburn, and the Phoenix Large Dog Park in Fair Oaks. Just make sure your pooch is up-to-date on all vaccines before you go. 

3. Play, Play, Play

Have you ever noticed that your pup starts panting after an informal play session with you? If your dog or cat loves to play, it’s time to make this activity part of your pet’s exercise routine. Make a flirt pole with PVC pipe, rope, and craft feathers for your cat. For a dog, swap the feathers for a bright tennis ball or stuffie. Your pet will love chasing the toy as you walk through the house or yard. 

From exercise wheels and bubbles to indoor agility courses and outdoor kiddie pools, there are dozens of ways to make play fun for your pet—and for you. Remember: the best pet exercise routine is one that you’ll stick to. 

If your pet struggles with a health condition like arthritis, obesity, or diabetes, schedule an appointment with our team at Bayside Animal Hospital. We can create a custom pet wellness program to help your furry friend exercise in a way that’s safe and effective.