Health Benefits of Play
Regular play time with your dog or puppy also ensures regular interaction and connection between the two of you, which is a must to maintain that all-important guardian-dog bond. Bonding with your canine should be fun and rewarding for both of you.
This bond, as well as the regular physical exercise and mental stimulation that also go hand in hand with regular play ultimately leads to a happy healthy dog. If you have several dogs in your household, then it also helps ensure their interactions are friendly and fun also. The behavioral benefits also extend outside of your own home – as dogs that play regularly generally know how to communicate and interact with other dogs and humans they haven’t met before. This is also very useful for when your dog comes into contact with a more aggressive and dominant dog. The upright, aggressive canine body language is quickly picked up by your dog and he or she will follow with an appropriate calm submissive response to appease the situation.
Regular play helps maintain your dog at a nice, lean body condition and will help to maintain good cardiovascular function. Often overweight dogs are never exercised or played with – hence half the reason for their problem (the other half being they are generally overfed, or fed tidbits).
Ultimately the true benefits of play are with the guardian to dog bond. Bonding with your puppy or dog is so important and is what canine companionship is all about! They are our best friends after all. Furthermore, playing with your dog should be fun for both of you – and what better way to help your dog learn and stay healthy and mentally stimulated. Regular play with all members of the family should be encouraged to help maintain a strong bond between everyone in the ‘pack’. It only needs to be 15 – 20 minutes of interaction per day and your dog can also continue play alone or with another dog in the household through interactive toys when you aren’t around. Take some time out to play with your dog more regularly!