Tips To Prevent Ligament Injuries When Walking Your Dog

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Most dogs need a daily walk lasting between 30 minutes and two hours, depending on their breed and age. While walking your dog for the recommended amount of time provides multiple health benefits, it can also put you both at risk of a cruciate ligament injury. Cruciate ligament injuries are one of the most common complaints seen by vets, while up to 200,000 people injure their cruciate ligament annually, too. Thankfully, holistic remedies can expedite your recovery times, but these tips will help you avoid injury altogether. 


Stretch and massage

To prevent a cruciate ligament injury, the surrounding knee and leg muscles need to be strong. To achieve this, you should regularly carry out stretching exercises such as squats and lunges. You can also use vibration therapy tools and equipment which target the muscles directly. This type of exercise can increase the muscles' range of motion, making them stronger and healthier so that they can provide the best support to your cruciate ligament. You can provide similar protection to your dog by routinely stretching out and massaging his leg muscles. This will also benefit your dog's overall health as it can decrease your dog’s blood pressure and aid digestive health.

Take precautions in bad weather

In bad weather conditions, such as ice, snow, and rain, both you and your dog are more likely to slip and twist the cruciate ligaments in your knees than on a nice summer day. However, you shouldn’t skip your daily walk as this can lead to weight gain in both you and your dog which can put more pressure on your cruciate ligaments. A lack of exercise can also affect your overall health and wellbeing. Instead of staying cooped up indoors, make sure you wear appropriate footwear; but avoid winter boots designed for dogs as these prevent them from gripping and feeling the ground properly. You also need to ensure the fur on your dog’s feet is clipped back and that his nails are a suitable length to aid his grip further. Most of all, stick to walking on the sidewalk and gritted roads as these routes will generally be safer. 

Weekend warriors

Avoid playing games that include leaping, twisting, and sharp stops and turns unless your dog is in good shape. Couch potato pets can easily be injured if they don't have good muscle strength to support the joints during rough play, fetching, and jumping.

It’s all too easy for either you or your dog to sustain a cruciate ligament injury when you’re out on your daily walk. But thankfully, by taking preventative action, you can protect these precious ligaments and enhance your entire health at the same time.

Photo by Beth Thompson on Unsplash

Blog submitted by Chrissy Jones

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