More Back Leg Exercises for your Dog
We had a great reaction to last week’s post on back leg exercises for dogs. So much so that we thought we would describe another great back leg exercise for your dog: tug.
Virtually every dog owner knows the game of tug and has probably played it with their dog countless times. But many pet owners don’t realize that it can be an effective exercise to target the hind legs and thus, an important tool to reduce hind leg atrophy.
How to Use Tug to Target a Dog’s Back Legs
If you want to use tug to target a dog’s back legs, simply adjust the angle of the tug toy in relation to the dog’s body. You can do this by remembering this simple rule: the higher you hold the toy relative to the dog’s body, the more load will be placed on the dog’s back legs. Conversely, the lower you hold the toy, the more load will be placed on their front legs.
With SlimDoggy Jack, we try and keep the toy higher than his torso, which forces him to use more back leg strength to tug. The key is to make sure that the dog is adjusting to the higher angle through their entire torso and not just by changing their neck flexion (which could place undue stress on their cervical spine). Like with the elevated touch drill from last week, this method of playing tug will work the dog’s back legs as well as their core muscles as they struggle to pull back against your force.
Playing tug with your dog is also a lot of fun and can be great exercise for you too (depending on the size of your dog and their voraciousness at play. I know that a few minutes of tug with Jack and we are both pretty spent. At least until round two!Please enjoy our FitDog Friday Blog Hop brought to you by SlimDoggy and our co-hosts To Dog with Love and My GBGV Life. Join the Hop or just enjoy the links below - lots of fun fitness tips and advice!