How you can Train a Dog to Use the Treadmill


Lack of sufficient exercise may cause several dog behavioral and health issues.

We, as pet parents want the very best for our dogs on the subject of their physical and mental well-being.

Unfortunately, we don’t at all times have the time to cater to their never-ending need for play and exercise. That is where treadmills turn out to be useful in helping our pets express their body’s need for physical activity.

On this blog post, I’ll discuss find out how to train a dog to make use of the treadmill. For ease of writing, I’ve used the male pronoun (he/him) when referring to dogs.

By the way in which, I even have one other post on selecting the most effective dog treadmill, if interested.

Advantages of Treadmills for Dogs

1. Quick, Multiple Workouts

There might be many the explanation why regular walks might not be possible for a dog. Reactivity, aggression, extreme fearfulness, and unfavorable weather might be a few of them.

A treadmill savvy dog can still get his each day walks in at a pace he’s comfortable and at a time he’s comfortable.

2. Useful for Chubby Dogs

Chubby dogs need frequent but shorter walks, in order that they don’t get drained out an excessive amount of. Nonetheless, it might be difficult for pet parents to exit so often. A treadmill is a convenient alternative.

3. Useful for Working and High Energy Dogs

2 walks a day may not cut it for prime energy and dealing dogs. They might need more exercise, way more!

A treadmill can’t only help provide dogs with ample exercise, but may help evenly spread it out the entire day even when with shorter workouts.

You may also prevent overstimulation which may occur if walking them outside an excessive amount of.

4. An Incredible Outlet for Dogs Who Prefer Staying Indoors

Yes, indoor dogs exist! Extremely fearful dogs, highly reactive dogs and aggressive dogs are a number of examples of dogs who would like other types of exercise as an alternative of walks in populated areas.

Change your treadmill’s pace to match your dog’s needs.

How To Train a Dog To Use the Treadmill (Step-by-Step Tutorial)

Step 1- Introducing

treadmill introduction for dog

Depending in your dog’s willingness to explore recent things, it could take anywhere between a number of days to a number of weeks to get used to a treadmill.

To start introducing, let your dog get used to the sound of the treadmill while it’s running. To speed up the method, you may physically use the treadmill a number of times in front of him.

Whenever you associate yourself with a stimulus, it’s easier to your dog to get comfortable around it.

Step 2 – Positive and fun association

Dogs learn to form associations in a short time. Teach him to form a brilliant positive association with the treadmill by engaging in his favorite activities around it.

Work out what motivates your dog. In case your dog enjoys playing, play a number of rounds of fetch or tug in the identical room because the treadmill while it’s running.

Playing facilitates the discharge of oxytocin in dogs, which is related to positive emotional responses.

In case your dog is extremely food motivated, give him some treats in an interactive toy across the running treadmill.

Involving an interactive toy will help keep your dog distracted and engaged in something else, while the treadmill sound becomes background noise.

Consistently engaging in fun activities across the treadmill will ensure your dog feels more comfortable with the treadmill’s sight, sound and functioning.

Step 3 – “On” and “Off”

Once your dog is comfortable across the treadmill, start teaching “on” and “off.” While getting your dog on the treadmill, be sure it’s off and stationary. Drop some low to medium value treats on the treadmill.

As soon as your dog puts his paws on the treadmill, reward and provides him more treats. Take out the high value treats when the treadmill starts moving.

Get him off quickly, but don’t give treats for getting off. Let your dog associate climbing up with more rewards. Limit the interaction with the treadmill to only ‘on’ and ‘off’ for the primary few days.

Moving too quickly too soon (even in case your dog is doing well) will intimidate and overwhelm him, leading to possible future reluctance.

Step 4 – The Regular Lure

Once your dog is comfortable climbing up on the treadmill and sticking around for a bit, add motion. Keep the treadmill at its lowest speed.

While your dog is walking, stand in front of him and the treadmill where you may show him his favorite chew stick and he can even reach it.

For the treat, use something that’s engaging but not too hard for the dog to chew on. You don’t want your dog to place in extra effort in breaking it down while he’s already working hard on the treadmill.

Use something like a sausage covered in cheese or a soft chicken jerky.

As you advance, you may also suspend the treat by a rope on the far end of the treadmill, closer to your dog’s nose. It will possibly act as a gentle lure while your dog is walking on the treadmill.

Step 5 – Pacing the Treadmill

Start at the bottom possible speed setting and train your way up. Select the suitable speed setting depending on –

  • Your dog’s age
  • Activity level
  • Your dog’s overall health
  • Comfort with the treadmill

Tip – Keep a number of soft cushions around in case of accidents.

While training your dog to make use of the treadmill, we’re, unfortunately, also putting our dogs prone to falling off of it. We will, nevertheless, reduce the impact of such accidents by having cushions and soft mats across the treadmill.

Step 6 – Running on the Treadmill

treadmill training for dog

  • Start with slow running for not greater than 1 minute

How long should your dog run really will depend on your dog’s breed, energy levels (at the moment and generally), exercise requirements and age.

Puppies under 6 months, whatever the breed, shouldn’t be running and sprinting because their muscles and joints are usually not fully developed.

Start by getting your dog to jog after which train their way as much as more speed.

  • Transition between running and walking

Fit and healthy dogs could be trained to be on a running treadmill for 20-Half-hour. Nonetheless, it’s vital to maintain transitioning between running, brisk walking and slowing down.

Never let your dog repeatedly run for your entire duration.

It would have a negative impact on his joints, lungs and overall health

  • Increase and reduce speed very step by step

After we’re walking or running on the treadmill, we’re consciously aware of its options and the changes we make to it. Our dogs are usually not.

While it’s mandatory to alter the pace of the treadmill (see previous subsection), you should accomplish that step by step so as to give your dog ample time to get used to it.

Precautions to Remember

1. Your Dog’s Form

Observe what your dog’s gait looks like while he’s using the treadmill. You’ll wish to be sure they’ve a natural gait and ease in movement.

Your treadmill must be long enough to suit your dog’s strides while having a bit scope to forestall slip offs.

2. Joint and Bone Health

In case your dog is senior or has any hip and joint issues, it’s best to avoid the treadmill. Before considering a treadmill to your dog, consider getting approval out of your vet.

3. Does Your Dog Enjoy Running?

Some dogs prefer taking long sniffing walks quite than sprinting. Such dogs may not enjoy treadmills as much. Moreover, in case your dog doesn’t have much practice in running, tone down his treadmill workout.

4. A Treadmill Shouldn’t Be Your Dog’s Only Source of Stimulation

training with dog treats

Running and sprinting will certainly find yourself along with your dog panting together with his tongue hanging out. Nonetheless, your dog’s each day workout should be a healthy balance between physical and mental stimulation.

While physical exertion is crucial, mental stimulation will enable you to in raising a relaxed and assured dog with highly improved cognitive functioning.

Include brain games, interactive feeding, puzzle games, sniffing and training activities so as to provide your dog with an enriched lifestyle.

The dynamics of physical and mental stimulation are different and can’t act as replacements of one another.

5. Leash Your Dog

Having a leash in your dog will enable you to keep him secure and can prevent minor slip offs. Nonetheless, never tie the leash to the treadmill. This could be very dangerous and should cause serious injuries including accidental trachea collapse.

6. Watch Like a Hawk

Regardless of how much of a treadmill expert your dog becomes, never leave him unsupervised.

An accident can occur in a matter of seconds. Have good working knowledge on dog CPR, in case of over exertion. Discuss with your vet about more safety suggestions.

7. Avoid Inclines

The incline position puts a number of pressure in your dog’s hind legs and joints. It’s best to limit incline to only a few minutes for smaller dogs and altogether avoid it for greater dogs.

8. Make Time for Warm up and Cool Down

Identical to in humans, a workout without proper warm up and funky down is a classic recipe for injury.

Warm-up and funky down ensure good mobility of your dog’s neck, back, legs and joints, which is of utmost importance while performing any intense activity.

Conclusion on How you can Train a Dog to Use the Treadmill

Well, I hope I’ve given you clear instructions on find out how to train a dog to make use of the treadmill.

A treadmill makes an incredible alternative on those days while you’re unable to take your dog out for an extended walk as a result of hot weather, heavy snow, heavy rainfall or when your dog would quite stay home.

Just have in mind that a treadmill is just not a everlasting alternative for walks. The physical and mental stimulation that sniffing provides while on an outside walk is irreplaceable.


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