Does your dog “feel the burn” when they exercise?
Hi FitDog Friday Folks! I hope that you are all staying fit as we near the start of the summer season.
Today’s post is about burning calories. Specifically, we wanted to compare how many calories are burned based on different exercise intensities. To best illustrate this, we examined both walking and running at different speeds. The greater the speed, the higher the intensity and the higher will be the associated calorie burn.
Below is a graph showing the estimated calories burned by a dog while walking at different speeds for 30 minutes. We show the calorie burn for dogs weighing 10, 50, and 90 lbs.
Here is a graph showing the estimated calories burned by a dog while running at different speeds for 30 minutes. Again, we show the calorie burn for dogs weighing 10, 50, and 90 lbs.
What it means
Clearly, exercise intensity matters with respect to calorie burn. Just like with human ‘circuits’ or Wods, amping up the intensity can make all the difference when it comes to getting in shape and achieving fitness and weight loss goals.
If your dog is able to participate (i.e. cleared by a vet) in higher intensity exercise, incorporating faster paced, or resistance based workouts as
part of their weekly routine is a great way to go. This can really help if you are pressed for time since your dog will burn more calories in less time. Furthermore, there are additional benefits to higher intensity workouts that are not measured in these calculations:
1- High intensity exercise can lead to a phenomenon called “excess post-exercise oxygen consumption” (EPOC) that means that your dog will potentially burn additional calories after the exercise session is completed. Sort of like an after burn effect.
2- High intensity exercise can lead to a sort of “runner’s high” euphoric feeling for your dog. The research also suggests that dog’s won’t achieve this feeling of well being from slower paced activity like walking.
We recommend that you mix in both high and low intensity activities when planning your dog’s weekly activity. Try and schedule light days before harder days so that you can be sure that your dog is adequately recovered. And as always, check with your vet before making dramatic changes to your dog’s routines.
Do you have any special high intensity exercise routines that you use with your dog? Besides running fast, what are some other drills that our readers should know about? Please share in the comment section below.
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