Written by: Mike Powell of Dog Embassy
The pandemic has compelled us to stay at homes for our safety, as well as discover new ways to stay active indoors. Good thing yoga is here to help us stay in shape—from meditation and mindfulness to strength, stretching, and breathing exercises, yoga offers many health benefits.
But have you already considered doing yoga with your furry best friend? Popularly known as doga, it is now becoming a common form of indoor exercise!
Does that mean forcing your dog to do the child’s pose and triangle pose? Not really! In this article, we will discuss why doga is the best fitness activity to keep you and your dog’s health in tip-top shape, as well as tips to help you practice it at home!
The Benefits of Doga
A form of bonding
More than a form of exercise, doga is also a way wherein you and your dog can connect and bond together. Doga provides an exciting way to bond with your furry friend, especially when you perform assisted poses in which you and your dog work together as fitness buddies. Doing assisted poses together increases your strength and focus while your dog learns how to trust you throughout the process. And just like yoga, relaxation from both humans and dogs is the core of doga, strengthening your bond over time.
A form of exercise
Ultimately, stretching is a form of exercise, which can help burn you and your dog’s excess fat. Obesity is a serious problem not only for humankind but for dogs too. Overweight dogs are prone to chronic illnesses, from heart illnesses to arthritis. Make sure your dog eats quality food (and quality treats, too!) and stays active (through doga and regular walks) to promote healthy weight.
However, don’t expect results to come overnight. You and your pooch have to regularly incorporate doga in your daily activities to get results.
Consequently, doga also encourages a dog’s inane behavior to stretch, which can help his range of motion and flexibility. In fact, it can help prevent ACL injuries, arthritis, and other bone problems that usually happen to older dogs.
A form of entertainment
It’s a form of bonding, exercise, and most importantly, a way to have fun. Sure, lounging and binge-watching your favorite TV series sounds fun, but what a better way to have fun when you know you’re doing something positive for you and your dog’s health?
Try out this Doga pose!
Ready to try doga out? Then start rolling out your yoga mat!
Start with relatively basic poses that you can handle easily. First, sit on the floor while facing your dog so the both of you could warm up before performing poses. Open up your chest, move your shoulders back, and straighten your posture. Try to match your breathing with your dog’s, pat his head to relax him, and start doing basic poses like downward-facing dogs. Do it and wait until your dog does it with you!
If your dog is pulling away or being whiny, stop for a while and try another day. However, if you’ve successfully pulled off a successful yoga session, don’t forget to thank your dog and reward him with wonderful treats that he’ll enjoy!
Don’t worry if he’s a picky eater—reward him with a treat that treats his stomach right!
Mike values dogs and the special connection they share with humans. Every day, he strives to deepen his knowledge of dogs and regularly writes about them on his website, Dog Embassy, to help dog owners give their pooches only the best.