This Saturday, Feb. 5th, I’ll be exhibiting at the Great Lakes Pet Expo at Wisconsin State Fair Park Exposition Center. It’s a fun day dedicated to pets and their owners! Both dog rescue organizations and dog breeders will be on hand, with their dogs, so if you’re interested in checking out the various breeds and seeing which one is best suited for your family’s lifestyle, this is the place to be. If you spot the one you’d like, it won’t be long before you find yourself on the other end of a leash.
As a potential, new owner/caretaker of a dog, there’s one thing I can suggest to you to make your experience with a canine companion one of the most rewarding relationships you’ll ever have. One of the secrets to a wonderful relationship is an 8 letter word: EXERCISE! First – it acts as a cement in the bonding experience. Your dog will listen to you if you’re the one that exercises it. They will notice when you put on those winter boots because it means. . . . ‘we’re going outside!!!” The other reason is obvious – it burns off that ‘jet fuel‘ young dogs seem to carry onboard and makes them calmer. Endorphins! Remember that science lecture in college? Dogs produce those calming endorphins, just like humans, when they exercise for at least 30 minutes.
Once you make it back from your long exercise session of 30-60 minutes, you will find a dog that needs some R&R time. Got a big project for school or work to do? Off to the dog park for a good 45 minutes of running and you just earned yourself at least 3 hours of UNINTERRUPTED time! And the bonus to that is just put the dog crate in your office/study area and be soothed by the gentle sighs coming from that slumbering fur-ball that’s recharging it’s mitochondria while you work!
You’ll know if you have a very relaxed dog if you’re given the full-monty-belly! It’s kind of like ‘Doggie Meditation.’ Calmness in a family dog is a very desirable trait and regular activity is the password for getting it. Hounds, Pointers, Spaniels and other field dogs are know to travel 7-8 miles without stopping when they are hunting in the field. Exercise = calmness = balanced. So if you’re looking at a dog breed to fit into your home and you exercise regularly, adopt a hunting breed. It’ll be a perfect match for both parties! If your weekend is sleeping in and heading to the movie theatre, a less active breed in the kind for you.
Teri and her dog Bella came together when Teri, a 3rd year Veterinary student at UW-Madison, had to perform her first spaying procedure on a rescue dog. Bella won her over and after the successful surgery, Teri took her home. To make sure that Teri does well on all her exams, Bella helps her study. After all, when your owner is the vet, you want them to ace every test they take!! Thanks Teri & Bella. I had an energetic and fun day with you!