As you probably know, obesity is a serious problem both for dogs and humans. Whether it’s because you eat too much or you don’t exercise enough, it’s never fun to be overweight. Furthermore, it’s not easy at all to replace bad habits. My Labrador and I had some pounds (or kg) to lose, and we worked hard to get in better shape. Now, I’m not sure what helps us to lose weight, maybe walking my dog more or how we change our diet?
After some research and reflection, I think that everything we did helped. The most important to keep in mind is that if you do nothing, there will be no change. However, I would like to help you and your dog lose weight. Everyone knows that exercise is essential for losing weight. Therefore, I finally found more information for you about: Does walking your dog help lose weight?
Yes, canine owners can lose weight by walking their dogs. Daily walks at a brisk pace around 30 minutes can help you burn anywhere from 90 to 200 calories. That could be extremely efficient to lose weight (~15lbs/year) with your dog. Proper nutrition, healthy habits and walking your dog are good ways to keep you both at an ideal weight!
For some dogs or people, walking won’t be enough exercise to lose weight. Fortunately, there are many fun ways to exercise your dog properly. At the end of your reading, you will understand if walking your dog can help you lose weight. Moreover, I will also share with you some weight loss tips and other activities to exercise with your dog!
3 Pillars To Help Your Dog To Lose Weight!
Before talking about walking with your dog, I want to share with you the basics of weight loss. Whatever reasons why you are (or your dog is) overweight, everything comes back to the same elements. Here are the 3 pillars you need to understand to lose weight!
As you know, we all have different conditions and limits. That’s why you will need to find the right diet, workout program, and routine for your (or your dog’s) needs. Weight loss for humans or dogs is extremely similar. Nonetheless, your pooch doesn’t have control of how much food he eats or physical activity he gets. Consequently, your dog’s health and well-being is your responsibility!
4 Things To Know To Help Your Dog Lose Weight! (Or You)
To start losing weight, there are some questions to answer. The analysis phase is as important as the practical one. In other words, the more you take time to plan your weight loss, the better your chances are to succeed. However, you still need to take action to start getting results. Here are some things to know before you (or help your dog) lose weight!
- Why Is Your Dog (or Are You) Overweight?
- Your Dog’s (or Your) Exercise Needs!
- What Food Is Better For Him (or You)?
- Your Dog’s (or Your) Condition and Limits!
Adapted Exercise Routine To Lose Weight!
Many people think that losing weight is all about how you exercise. Physical activity is indeed essential to get in better shape, but your nutrition is more important. It’s the same thing for dogs. If you (or your dog) eat too much or poor quality food, it’s normal to gain weight. Therefore, make sure that you both have good nutrition before starting exercise!
Once you (and your dog) eat a good quantity of healthy food, it’s time to go working out. At the start, it’s always better to start slow and with short walks or training sessions. It will take time to be suitable for more intense physical activity both for dogs and humans. The first step is to understand your (or your dog’s) physical activity requirements!
What Are Your Dog’s Exercise Needs?
To know how much exercise your dog should have, there are many things to analyze. His breed, age, health, energy, and many other elements will influence his needs. In general, dogs need around 30 to 60 minutes of daily exercise. That’s why by providing your furball with proper exercise you can lose weight with him!
High-energy breeds such as Labrador or Golden Retrievers, Belgian Malinois, Dalmatians, Australian Shepherds or Border Collies could need up to 2 hours of daily exercise. On the contrary, more lazy dogs like Bulldogs, Basset Hounds, Newfoundlands or Great Danes could need around 20 to 30 minutes of physical activity every day. As you can see, it’s crucial to know your dog exercise needs to lose weight with him without hurting or injuring him!
Does Walking Your Dog Help Lose Weight?
Let’s dive into the real subject of this article. Walking your dog has many benefits such as good bonding, social improvement, etc. Above all, this activity is an awesome source of daily exercise to lose weight. According to this article [Link Open In a New Tab] from Pet Helpful, a study shows that walking your dog is more effective to lose weight than having a membership in a gym or joining a diet plan!
It might seem strange, but I think that it makes sense. Walking is a very good way to burn calories regularly. With this simple daily exercise, proper nutrition, and healthy habits, you could both lose weight. Furthermore, walking with your dog has many other advantages, and it can be fun!
How Much Weight Can You Lose Walking Your Dog?
Let’s do some maths to understand how good exercise walking is. On average, a brisk walk of 25 minutes burns roughly 1 calorie for every pound of your body weight. For example, let’s say George weighs around 180 lbs. He will burn around 180 calories by walking with his dog 25 minutes every day!
Just to give you an idea, you could lose around 1 pound of fat a week by burning 500 calories a day. For example, after one year of daily walks (25 min.) with his dog, George would lose around 18 pounds in theory. Therefore, walking is an excellent way to lose weight in the long term!
As a comparison, 15 minutes of running (around 2 miles or 3.2 km) burns around between 140 and 260 calories. In theory, you could lose around 20 pounds per year by running 15 minutes every day. It’s more efficient, but not everybody (or all dogs) can or want to run. That’s impressive to see that daily walks of 25 to 30 minutes can almost be as effective as daily runs of 15 minutes. Let’s see how long you should walk with your dog to lose weight!
How Long You Should Walk Your Dog To Lose Weight?
Anywhere from 20 to 30 minutes of walking (around 2 miles or 3.2 km) with your dog could be ideal for most canines. Logically, the longer you walk, the more weight you lose. Nonetheless, you always need to make sure that your pooch is suitable for the distance you want to walk with him. Otherwise, you could hurt him with too much exercise!
For that reason, you should start with short and slow walks. Once you build up some stamina, you could increase the distance and intensity of your walking. After some weeks or months of daily walks, you should see some results. However, you should be very careful to not walk too long distances with some specific dogs!
Dogs That Can’t Walk Long Distances!
- Old Dogs.
- Brachycephalic (Short-Nosed) Breeds: Bulldogs, Pugs, Shih Tzus, Mastiffs…
- Dogs With Structural Issues. (Hip/Elbow Dysplasia, Arthritis…)
Smart Tip: You could also do more than one walk if your dog can’t keep up with you. For example, two walks of 15 minutes could be as interesting than one long walk of 30 minutes!
When Can You Start Lose Weight Walking Your Dog?
The best time to start losing weight is now. Walking with your dog is a simple habit that can help you lose weight. Nonetheless, it’s not always easy to build a healthy habit at the start. Don’t forget that the sooner you start, the sooner you will get in better shape!
Do You Need Help From Professionals To Lose Weight?
It’s not easy to lose weight on your own, but it’s 100% possible. For people in poor shape, it could be an excellent idea to visit your doctor or a physician. They will help you with personalize advice to have better weight loss results. Honestly, you shouldn’t have any problem to begin walking with your dog even if you’re not in good shape!
For dogs that are overweight or have other restrictions, it’s always better to visit your vet. These furry animals can sometimes be difficult to understand. That’s why it’s highly recommended to see professionals before starting a weight loss program. However, walking with your dog is safe if you respect his conditions and boundaries!
Is Walking Also Good For Overweight Dogs?
Walking with your dog isn’t only good for you. Your companion will also benefit and love that activity. Daily walks are ideal to provide proper exercise to your dog especially if he’s overweight. His extra weight can restrict him to do many things like running, biking or hiking. However, walking your dog will always be a good mental stimulation and physical activity!
You should always provide your buddy with at least 15 to 20 minutes of walking every day. It’s crucial for his health, well-being, and happiness. (Especially if he’s overweight!) Furthermore, you should try many other activities like swimming or free playtime to help him spend his energy. Allowing your dog to sniff on walks can also be interesting as mental entertainment to avoid boredom!
Walking is excellent to help your dog lose weight. While writing this article, I’ve found an extremely inspiring video that shows the story of Kai, a Golden Retriever that lost 100 pounds. Maybe, that could motivate you to improve your dog’s lifestyle with better nutrition and proper exercise!
5 Weight Loss Tips For Dogs And Humans!
Now, I know that it isn’t easy to lose weight for you or your dog. Nonetheless, that’s not a good reason to give up before even getting started. With the right information, hard work and perseverance, I’m sure that you both can lose weight. To help you succeed, I’ve found some useful things to know before getting in better shape. Here are some weight loss tips for both you and your dog!
- Drink More Water!
- Try Intermittent Fasting!
- Avoid Too Much Sugar!
- Sleep Well!
- Eat More Whole Food!
For Your Dog!
- Visit Your Vet To Have Some Help!
- Feed Your Dog With High-Protein and Low-Carb Food!
- Reward Him The Right Way! (With Fun Instead of Treats!)
- Find Fun Canine Activities or Sports To Enjoy!
- Don’t Give Too Much Food To Your Dog!
5 Activities or Sports To Lose Weight With Your Dog!
Walking with your dog isn’t the only way that he could help you lose weight. Having a furry companion is ideal to exercise and have fun with him. There are plenty of canine activities that could get you both in better shape. However, it’s always safer and more effective to start with moderate physical activity. Here are some things to do to be more active with your dog!
Moderate Canine Activities!
- Swimming. (Good For Fragile Dogs: Overweight, Structural Issues, Old, etc.)
- Walking With Your Dog.
- Underwater Treadmill.
- Tag or Chase.
- Play In Water, Leaves or Snow.
Intense Dog Sports!
- Running With Your Dog.
- Agility Course.
- Fetch or Frisbee.
Last Thoughts About Losing Weight Walking Your Dog!
As you can see, walking can be interesting to lose weight. After some time, you could enjoy more intense sports like jogging or biking to get in better shape. Keep in mind to always respect your dog’s limits and conditions. Not every companion can run or play frisbee safely! (Is running or frisbee can be bad for dogs?)
Owning a dog is an awesome opportunity to become more active. Remember that your companion’s health and happiness is in your hands. I hope this article helps you understand that walking with your dog is excellent to lose weight in the long term. I’m looking forward to seeing you walking your buddy while I exercise with my Labrador!