Al Hayat's Guide to keeping Your Pets Active and Healthy

Cute healthy Dog

Thursday, December 15, 2022

Why do Your Pets Need to be Active?

Big dogs; small dogs; cats; rabbits; furry or non-furry; breed or indie — people with pets come with various preferences, likes, and dislikes, however, the one factor that unites all of us is our undying love for them, and attempt at doing everything we can to keep them safe, healthy, and happy. 

Apart from some breeds of dogs such as golden retrievers, border collies, and huskies, the majority of pets including most cats can be categorised simply as ‘lazy’. All they want to do is eat their food, and curl up in their warm bed, along with the occasional barking and meowing, and gazing outside the endless window watching the world pass them by. 

Because they aren’t inherently the most active animals, such pets tend to develop several health issues, the most common being obesity. And even though a fat cat or a fat dog is the raging trend on the internet, it leads to several heart issues, weakened bones, painful joints, etc. leading to a severe decline in their life expectancy. 

How does being active help a pet? 

  • Improved mental health 
  • More bonding time with paw parents 
  • Helps in keeping their weight in check 
  • Better and healthier sleep patterns 
  • Helps them become friendlier with other people 

There are a couple of factors that come into play when talking about maintaining your pet’s health and well-being. The first is food, the second is exercise, and the third is the environment. Below we have broken down ways you can incorporate these into your pet’s daily routine. 

On the Food Front

  1. Keep a close eye on the backside of the food that you’re feeding your pet. The best way to tackle this would be either only feeding them food from brands that have been recommended by their veterinarian, or getting a balanced diet chart from their vet and closely monitoring the food you provide them with. 
  1. Limit the amount of human food that you feed them from your plate. Of course, letting them nibble a sausage once or twice is not the end of the world, however, it is best not to make it a habit. 
  1. As much popularity as kibble or dry food holds, turns out, it is not the healthiest of the options out there. Our suggestion would be to keep a good balance between dry and wet food. 
  1. Pay attention to their thirst and always keep several bowls of water spread across the house, for their easy access. 

Plenty of Exercise

  1. Take the help of toys. 

Laser pointers, frisbees, throw balls, ribbons, or sometimes, just a simple thread can help transfer your pet from dormant mode to active mode. To make things easier, you can keep dedicated playtime. Not so much with dogs, because they will be ready to play whenever you want them to, but cats, being extremely routine-oriented, would recognise that the specific hour is when the human comes and plays with them, thus turning it into a healthy habit. 

  1. Get a cat tree for cats

Cats are generally lazier than dogs. All they want is to sunbathe, eat, and sleep. Getting them a cat tree introduces exercise into their indoor lives much more organically. Their love for sitting and sleeping on heights helps them get accustomed and eager to explore that cat tree, thus squeezing in plenty of exercises. 

  1. Dedicated Walks 

Once early morning, once in the evening, and once at night is a good amount of walks for your animals, both cats and dogs. You can keep these walks short, maybe once or twice around the block, complex, or neighbourhood. Remember to ALWAYS use a harness.

  1. Hiking, Fetching, Swimming

Apart from walking, you can also involve your pets in other outdoor activities, such as taking them on local hikes, going to the park with them, and taking them to the beach (suggested for dogs and not cats). 


  1. Clean environment

Just like human beings, a clean environment is extremely important for a pet’s mental and physical well-being as well. Always make sure that their play and sleep area is well scrubbed, and not dirty. Empty the litter box every two days. Keep their toys from gathering dust. Wash their beds every six months. 

  1. Sufficient space in the litter box

A litter box for a kitten and a litter box for a big cat is not the same. Make sure that your cats have enough space inside the litter box. If you have more than two cats, it is advisable to have multiple litter boxes spread across the house. 

Our pets are not just our play buddies, we need to understand and realise the fact that they come with responsibilities and taking care of them needs effort, time, and finances.