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Saturday, January 10, 2015

#FidoSeeFidoDo Brain and Body Workout

by Carrie Boyko, CEB
***Giveaway extended to Friday, February 6***
While watching my neighbor workout in our cul-de-sac, I was inspired to try a few new techniques to change up our activities--both my own and the dogs'--while offering them a new problem to solve: following my lead. It's been a fun new game that has left us both sufficiently tired, and sometimes laughing at one another! 

In today's post I'm offering a giveaway via Twitter or Instagram, whereby you can try out our new method of workout-mania. To win 3 bags of US-made treats, just post a pic of your Fido trying out our new approach, and use the hashtag #FidoSeeFidoDo. Here's how it goes:
  • If outdoor activities are not an option at this time of year, try getting your dog involved in our #doga workouts by using the short, instructional videos I have developed with yoga instructor, Jess Wilson. You can see above that Tanner and I have had a #FidoSeeFidoDo moment in that photo posted on Instagram.
  • Attach a long leash to your dog or work in a traffic- and distraction-safe area, like a large fenced back yard.
  • Start by changing up your pace--walk, run, skip, or tip toe. Whatever provides a variation that will cause your pup to have to change his pace to match yours. I'm guessing your Fido won't be skipping or tip toeing, but certainly he can learn to speed up or slow down. Learning the "Slow" command is a good thing for most younger dogs.
  • When your dog masters this easy version, try walking or running backwards while calling your dog toward you. If your dog knows the back up command, be sure to give him a chance to mimic your activity. This is a wonderful brain game for both of you! Tanner has mastered this, but seems a bit confused by doing it for longer distances. Oliver, not so much. He seems to want to turn around and face me. Whatever works for your dog, keep it fun.
  • Next I tried squats moving left, then right. Both dogs moved back and forth when it was their turn, but seemed seriously confused by my goofy walking method. Neither of them tried to squat! No great surprise there. Yours?
  • An easier version of the back and forth squat was squat-stepping all the way across the cul-de-sac in one direction, and then going back to the direction from whence we came. Watch your dog's facial expressions as you do this one. It cracked me up to watch Tanner tilt his head as if to say, "What the heck are you doing, Mom?"
  • I'm sure I'll come up with some new variations, but for now, feel free to try these or create your own. Ideas? I'd love to hear them in the comments section!
Finally, after you use this goofy new workout approach, be sure to get on the ground and
have some good, old-fashioned bonding time with your dog. I'm talking ear rubs, belly scratching, massage and silliness. Whatever your dog enjoys, make it happen. Seal the deal with a yummy treat, and your pup will be looking forward to your next cockamamie exercise session.

Now, to enter our giveaway of 3 bags of US-made treats, just get a snapshot of your pup when you're in action and post it to Instagram or Twitter. No human faces, please. We just want to see your dog's expression. Feel free to submit pics of him joining in, if you're so lucky. Lastly, don't forget to include the #FidoSeeFidoDo hashtag in order to win.

Photos will be RT'd by @AllThingsDog and your pics on Twitter will be reposted to my Facebook page for others to enjoy. You may submit one pic per pup on each of the two venues: Instagram and Twitter. I'll draw a winner on Friday, January 23 Friday, February 6 and announce it on Twitter as well as here on the blog. Good luck, and have fun.

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