Health 101: Practicing Yoga with Your Dog

Yoga is an activity that has tons of health benefits for humans; why not let your dog benefit from the exercise too? Well, the trend of yoga for dogs or as they say Doga has spread all over. Many instructors are now conducting sessions for pets and their parents. As far as pet-parents are concerned the reactions have been different. Some are supporting the idea and consider it an excellent opportunity to bond with their pets. Others think that yoga is serious business and incorporating your dogs may trivialize the spirituality of the act. Well in spite of the mixed reviews, doga is gaining popularity as many dog-parents love to combine exercise with bonding with their pets.Practicing Yoga with Your Dog

Is Yoga an Exercise for Dogs?

The motive behind dog yoga is spending quality time with our pets. In today’s world, our lives have become too busy; responsibilities almost always surround us. It gets difficult to manage time for exercise, and you may end up neglecting your furry friend as well. For this reason, people thought of activities in which they could include their pups. And when our dogs can swim, hike, and roam around the city with us, why not let them join yoga. Your pooch won’t be doing the same asanas as you, but he would be a part of some of the poses.

Is Yoga Beneficial for My Furry Friend?

That doesn’t mean there aren’t any health benefits for your pooch.  Yoga will drain the stress from your dog’s body. Your breathing exercises will have a calming effect on your pooch. It will also nourish the bond between you and your furry friend and reinforce your position as the pack-leader. The activity synchronizes your energy with your dog and creates a harmonious environment. Of course, it can’t replace the daily needs of exercise. You still need to walk your dog and let him socialize with other pups.

How Will My Dog Participate in Doga?

Most classes will require you to put your dog off-leash. Yes, it may seem impossible initially- you are supposed to meditate and relax, while your dog is allowed to move around without a leash! Well, don’t let the thought scare you as your dog can figure out where he belongs. However, if your pup is aggressive, it would be better to make him wear a comfortable dog harness for safety.

The session will begin with asanas that involve massaging and petting your dog.  You can further move on to poses where you let your dog sit on your lap or lie beneath you. The best part is that dogs of all sizes can be incorporated. You can also use your bigger dogs for stretches, be sure to make him stand far enough.

When your dog becomes calm and relaxed, now it’s time to let him participate. If there aren’t any doga classes near your area, don’t worry, you can try simple poses at home. Here are a few yoga positions for you to practice with your pooch:

The Chair Pose:

Make your dog sit while you support his back, and then lift his front paws up in the air.

Chaturanga:

Let your pooch lay on his stomach while you pet him.

Savasana:

Let your pup lie on his back and pet his belly.

Inner Dog Mudra:

This pose lets you synchronize your energy with your pooch. Rest your forehead on your dog’s head and connect your minds.

Puppy Paw Mudra:

Let your dog lay on his stomach with his front legs extended outwards. Rest your head on your dog’s stomach and turn it to the side.

Fitness is imperative for you and your pooch and a doga class will be a great idea. Don’t worry if you have a large-breed dog as they can be accommodated too. Feed your large-breed dog a healthy diet (at least an hour before) and bring him to the doga class to expend some energy.

AUTHOR BIO:
Jenny Perkins is an Animal Behavior Specialist and a passionate writer. She loves to write about the nutrition, health, and care of dogs. She aims at providing tips to dog owners that can help them become better pet parents. She writes for the blog Here Pup.

 

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