Hi guys! I know it’s been so long since I’ve been on the blog. We’ve had a very busy beginning of the year and I did not have time to sit down and write for the blog. But I’m hoping to get back to it!
If you follow us on Instagram or Facebook, you know that we recently started getting into canine conditioning. This activity has a lot of great advantages, as I was telling you about in my recent post on social media. A lot of our followers have been asking us about how to get started or what equipment we use, so I thought it would be nice to do a review and let you know our thoughts!
Balance disc, peanut and balance pods
These are the first equipments we got, from Amazon. The balance disc is a great equipment to get started. It is very easy to teach the dog to start with their front paws up on the disc. The peanut can be a great piece of equipment. However, the one I got is too small for the huskies to fully get up the peanut with their full body up on the peanut, so we can’t really use the full potential of the peanut. Watch out for the right size for your dog, and you may not be able to find it on Amazon if it’s too big. The balance pods will be used later in our learning, once they are able to differentiate the right paw from the left, and their front from their rear foot.
Stepper and plank
We added the stepper and a DIY plank after seeing our physio who recommended us to start training on stable equipment rather than unstable equipment. This is a very common mistake for beginners, and we did it, to start with unstable equipment. However, your dog needs to learn the right shape and form of the exercise on a stable platform before adding difficulty and progression with unstable equipments. We got the stepper from the dollar store, and use it with foam mats from the dollar store as well, to prevent the stepper from sliding when we use it. The platform is a DIY, very easy to make, and we have a yoga mat underneath to prevent sliding as well. We use the platform for a variety of exercises and this is actually for now the piece of equipment we use the most. You can also use a fitness stepper from Amazon as the platform.
Foam pad and Fitbones
These are the last pieces of equipment we added to our gym, recommended by our physio. The foam pad is from Amazon. The Fitbones are the only fancy equipment we have, just because I did not find a cheaper equivalent, and even then we waited for a sale to get them cheaper 🙂 I’ve heard lots of great things about the Fitbones. We have just received them so we haven’t got the opportunity to use them a lot yet. We got two because the huskies are too big to fit on one fitbone on its own if we want them to have a proper shape. But if your dog is small he can fit on just one. You will find a lot of exercises on Fitbones because they are a very popular piece of equipment on Youtube, Facebook or Instagram.
With all these equipments, I think our gym is good enough for what we need it. The last thing I wanted to share with you guys, is our treats. Because we use a lot of positive reinforcement and luring for our exercises, you need some yummy treats for your session. We use these Crumps mini Trainers treats and also some treats from Straight to Summit, a small company based on instagram (I just didn’t have any left for the pictures as we need to place a new order). What I like from both these treats is the size of it, very small, so I don’t feel like I’m fattening my dogs during training with lots of treat calories. I also like that they are not too hard, not too chewy, so the dogs don’t waste time chewing on the treat and losing their focus from chewing on the treat, which I find with other regular treats.
This was the walk in our gym! If you do canine conditioning, what equipments do you have or what treats do you use?