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Protect Your Dog’s Health for Canine Fitness Month (aka Active Dog Month)

Canine Fitness Month or Active Dog Month is a holiday in April that encourages dog owners to improve their dog’s fitness level, diet, and overall health. It’s also a reminder to schedule a check-up with your veterinarian to evaluate your dog’s weight, diet, and activity level and determine if you need to make any changes. Here is everything you need to know about Canine Fitness Month, including how you can protect your dog’s health.

How Did Canine Fitness Month Begin? 

Canine Fitness Month began when it was established by FitPAWS. FitPAWS is an organization that is committed to raising awareness about the dangers of canine obesity and a sedentary lifestyle. The organization wants dog owners to know that obesity, and the problems it causes, are preventable if you take the time to better understand your dog’s needs and overall health.

What Should Dog Owners Do for Canine Fitness Month? 

You can use Canine Fitness Month as an excuse to make an appointment with your veterinarian. You can find out if your dog is on the right diet, if he is at a healthy weight, and if he is getting enough daily exercise. You can also get into the routine of making healthier and more active choices every day for you and your dog, including:

  • Take a daily walk, even if it’s a short one.
  • Give your dog active play time; e.g. playing fetch or hide and seek.
  • Making a switch to healthier dog treats or reducing the number of treats you give him.
  • Adjusting his diet if recommended by your veterinarian.
  • Hiring a dog walker if you don’t have time to walk him every day.
  • Take him to doggy daycare while you’re at work.

Are There Ways to Tell if Your Dog Isn’t Active Enough? 

Yes, there are ways to tell if your dog isn’t active enough. Recognizing these warning signs will help you get your dog on a healthier path and reduce his risk of health conditions like diabetes, obesity, and heart disease:

  • Weight gain
  • Sluggishness or listlessness
  • Excess barking, whining, or destructive behavior
  • Rough play
  • Shaking or pacing
  • Signs of stiff or achy joints
  • Trouble breathing

Make an appointment with your veterinarian before you make any major changes to your dog’s diet or exercise routine so that you can be sure you’re doing so safely.