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5 tips for losing excess weight with the help of your dog

New year, new resolutions... What about habits?

People usually set resolutions or goals for the New Year, but we usually don't stick to them for very long. What if we would rather create new habits without which our day would eventually become empty?

with the help of a dog to healthy habits

As you may already know, dogs are great helpers in developing healthy habits and also in general well-being - having a dog makes us feel more loved and happy. You can read more about this in one of our previous blogs , where we wrote about The positive impact of domestic animals on your health .

If losing weight or exercising more is on your list of New Year's resolutions this year, we have prepared 5 tips for an easier start and a way for you to persist as long as possible. Your best friend - the dog - will help you with this.

So, if you have a dog, great, because he might be the reason why you won't forget this year's resolutions after a month.

1. Spread your meals throughout the day

For the best results for both health and weight loss, it is recommended to eat small amounts of food at regular intervals. This will allow your body to burn calories faster.

Eating more than 3 times a day supports a healthy weight. Ideally, it should be 5 times a day, in appropriate amounts.

If your dog is also overweight, it is also recommended to divide the daily amount of food into three meals.

2. Be active together!

The best advice for a healthier body and weight loss besides diet is, of course, activity. Be active with your dog. Just having a dog requires walks. If you and your pet don't walk very much at the moment, it will be enough to start by deciding to walk your dog for at least 45 minutes a day and turning it into a habit. Your pet will quickly start reminding you and you will almost never be able to miss a walk.

If regular long walks are already part of your habits, you can start jogging or hiking up the hill.

Regardless of whether you walk, run or do any activity together with your pet, remember to find a suitable pace for both of you.

activities with the dog

If you have decided to run and both you and your dog are not very fit, try to combine walking and running at the beginning. For example: 1km run, 500m walk,...

The activities you do together with your pet should be something you both enjoy. Therefore, make sure that you start the exercise slowly and gradually increase it.

Here are some ideas of what you can do together with your pet to exercise, burn calories and have fun:

  • Walking
  • Run
  • Hiking
  • Swimming
  • Roller skating
  • Kayaking
  • Agility training
  • Playing in the dog park
  • Rowing on the soup
  • Throwing/catching the ball
  • Canicross
ointment for the care and protection of dog paws in summer and winter

Tips for exercising with your dog

    1. Teach your dog basic obedience commands. This will make joint activities much easier for you.

    2. Consult with your veterinarian to determine your dog's health and the appropriate activity levels they can safely achieve per day—especially if your dog is overweight. Of course, start slowly and don't overdo it right at the beginning.

    3. Make sure your dog has access to fresh water.

    4. Avoid extreme cold or excessive heat.

    3. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables

    Fruits and vegetables are an important part of a healthy diet and are ideal if you want to lose weight. Why? Not only are fruits and vegetables full of vitamins and minerals, they're also low in fat and calories, so you can eat a lot of them without feeling guilty. In addition, their high fiber content promotes healthy digestion, which can also help you lose extra pounds.

    varied diet with lots of fruits and vegetables

    Whenever possible, try to resist and replace processed foods such as cookies, cakes and chips with fruit or vegetables.

    At the end of the day, yours should probably also have vegetables in their diet, especially if you don't add them yet.

    In addition, try to include as many whole foods and homemade dishes with lots of vegetables in your diet as possible. The list of fruits and vegetables that both you and your furry friend can enjoy is as follows:

      • Blueberries
      • Apples
      • Bananas
      • Mango
      • Pears
      • Peaches
      • Broccoli (for dogs just the stem of the 'bush' - cooked)
      • Green
      • Carrots
      • Boiled potatoes
      • ...

      4. Avoid junk food

      If you and your dog have been snacking on too many treats lately, this may be one of the reasons why you have gained some extra pounds.

      Tip: Avoid buying your favorite junk food. That way, you won't have to fight against temptation, because these treats won't be in your house. Indulge only every now and then, in moderation.

      fruit instead of unhealthy snacks

      Find out what healthy snacks you love. For example, raspberries, blueberries, nuts or almond butter - and allow yourself to enjoy!

      At the same time, assess how many snacks your dog eats too much. If your dog also needs to lose weight, consider cutting back on unhealthy dog ​​treats or table scraps. Look for healthy alternatives like the fruit and vegetable suggestions above.

      5. Drink lots of water

      Another important weight loss tip that cannot be forgotten is to drink plenty of water. If you don't get into the habit of this, set a reminder on your phone to start drinking water - and try to drink about 2 liters of water a day.

      drinking a lot of water helps in losing extra pounds

      Drinking water throughout the day with your furry friend will help you both stay hydrated. Among other things, water will also give you a feeling of satiety - so you can avoid overeating or craving unhealthy food.

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