We all love our pets! But some people are taking it one step further and are practicing yoga with their dogs.
By Guest Blogger, Amy
For years and years, yoga has been a much-revered practice for many people looking for optimal health, flexibility, and a decrease in stress.
Coincidentally, many people attribute their dogs to having nearly the same effects on their lives. So it only makes sense that today’s progressive yogi’s and dog owners have begun to mesh the two areas within their lives at dog based yoga classes.
The idea of Doga (Dog Yoga) was introduced by Suzi Teitelman, a yoga teacher.
Now, these doga classes are taking place around the world, both at yoga studios and animal shelters. Through the classes, the participants hope to cultivate a sense of calmness within themselves, and also within their dogs. As much of the theory revolving around yoga is based on energy, it is thought that focused yogis can transfer their healthy energy to dogs, and vice versa.
Despite the name, dog yoga very rarely requires the dogs themselves to get into specific poses. Some classes do encourage gentle stretching and massaging of your canine friend, but typically the dogs are there for support and as a prop. The owners do their poses adapted to the dog’s presence, often making physical contact with their dog throughout the class.
Remember, “Doga” isn’t something that you force on your dog. Instead, try to be understanding and mindful in your approach. Your role is to listen and observe your dogs’ body language.
7 Benefits of Yoga for Dogs (“D-oga”)
First and foremost, they encourage a greater level of bonding between the dog and their owner. This is a great way to increase your existing bond and fine-tune your strong relationship. Yoga is s perfect opportunity for calmness and reflection. Use this as an anchor point to show affection and trust with your canine friend.
By improving the bond with your dog, you improve the possibility for any behavioural problems to naturally correct themselves.
Secondly, they allow the owner to participate in activities outside of the home while not missing out on quality time with their beloved pet. The classes often prove to be relaxing for both dog and owner, so they provide a great supplement to other types of dog training while reinforcing the human-canine connection.
Meet New People
Doga classes also offer an opportunity for socialization, both for the owner and for the dog. Many people come away from the classes with not only a greater sense of calm but also like-minded friends with similar health and pet interests.
Whether it’s your first time attending or you’ve been a yoga enthusiast for years doga brings the two areas of your persona and social life together in an enjoyable yet meaningful way.
Another great benefit is that doga Increases physical activity in all types of dogs. This is usually more important for older dogs who may need more of an incentive to get more exercise.
It’s not always easy to get some types of dogs to commit to daily activities especially older, dogs, injured dogs or those dogs that are just lazy and need that extra push to get out of the house.
We all know dog care can sometimes be strenuous, so things like a dog nail grinder are definitely worth the investment.
With Doga, it’s a perfect excuse for your dog to be actively involved in your outdoor experience and even gives them the chance to join in.
Remember Doga is aimed at stretching and this can help a more fragile dog become more flexible. This will aid their strength and even help to improve blood circulation around injured areas.
It’s proven that yoga helps to relax the mind and body and provide a better sense of awareness in the present moment. Doga shares these health benefits by encouraging a more peaceful and mindful approach.
This is of significant importance especially for those dogs who are hyperactive, frantic or just need some assistance in calming down. The Doga experience has a twofold effect. The first is a calmness of mind and the second is helping to burn energy and calories with structured moves and stretches.
Doga is a fantastic way to find other people with similar interests. Most dog owners love being around other dog owners and this dog-friendly crowd almost always get along. Finding people with similar interests can be difficult especially if you are new to a town or city.
Doga gives you the opportunity to meet people and integrate on a topic area that you both love: Dogs!
Yoga is a thrilling experience if you really get into it and doga is no different. The great thing is that all dog lovers enjoy including their dogs in everyday life. This practice gives them an opportunity to take that bond one step further and actually have fun together in a more structured environment.
Although it can sometimes be a little bit distracting to have your dog there, in time they will settle down and enjoy the experience.
If you truly want to include your dog into the yoga practice then try this:
- Allow your dog to naturally curious without being forceful.
- If your dog is smaller then you can carry or hold him during your routine.
- Give bigger dogs the opportunity to join in by stretching alongside them
- Whether big or small every dog will be able to rest by your side during quieter poses
Talk to local yoga studios and animal shelters in your area to see where you can take a yoga class with your dog.
About the author
Hey, I’m Amy and I’m in love with my Pets! I have a diverse variety, including 2 cats, 1 dog, 3 rabbits, 2 guinea pigs, a rat, and a beautiful macaw. I love writing about everything pet-related and spend as much time as I can sharing my personal experiences on my blog. UltimatePetHub.com