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There are lots of good reasons to use a dog weight training vest – from not only building up your dogs muscle and stamina but to helping to keep your pet calm. Down below you will find everything you need to know about weighted vests for dogs and where to buy them.
Dawn Antoniak-Mitchell, dog trainer and owner of Bona Fide Dog Academy, teachers a winter workout class that includes training and behavioral tips on Saturday, Jan. 7. Antoniak-Mitchell said dogs, just like people, can gain some winter weight and need to exercise their minds and bodies.
Weight training works for dogs the same as it does for people
Training with weights builds a dog's muscles
When your Pit Bull reaches 18-24 months in age put them in a quality weight pull harness and have them drag 3-5 lbs for short distances while walking. This is where most weight pull trainers start their dogs. We are not going to get into in this article but the benefits of this exercise carry over to building your dogs strength up.Although the premise of weight pull is simple, it is a little more complex to train. Even in the early stages of training, dogs must wear well-fitting harnesses made specifically for weight pull. Harnesses used for leash walking or sledding are not appropriate for this sport. There are several online retailers that supply custom weight-pull harnesses based on a dog’s measurements. Most dogs do not mind wearing their harnesses, but some dogs require some to get used to it. If your dog is uncomfortable wearing his harness, put it on him prior to feeding him meals or playing with his favorite toy so he expects wonderful rewards from his new apparatus.The Biko PR Bands provide elastic resistance, the same way professional athletes use weight and resistance training. The bands come in a color-coded system of progressive elastic resistance – yellow (light), red (medium), green (heavy). The resistance can be increased or decreased just by changing the PR Bands. When using the Biko, every stride taken works the gluteals and the quadriceps harder. Increasing and maintaining muscle mass and strength is the best possible support for the joints, tendons, and ligaments that we can provide our canine athletes and working dogs. This in turn will help prevent injury by reducing the overall stress placed on these structures.Once the dog is comfortable in his harness, the training process begins. Proper pulling form is multi-faceted with several on which to focus. The goal of the trainer is to teach the dog the best possible physical posture. A dog with ideal pulling form walks forward in a straight line toward his handler, pulling the cart as he goes. His head should be very low, with his nose almost touching the ground. As the weight increases, he should dig his nails into the substrate for traction. (Owners often do not trim their dog’s nails for a few weeks leading up to a weight pull so that the nails can act as cleats, digging into the ground.)