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Struggling to ensure your dog gets enough exercise during the lockdown? Try these tips

For pet owners across SA, it's a conundrum that has no solution. Picture: Reuters

For pet owners across SA, it's a conundrum that has no solution. Picture: Reuters

Published Mar 29, 2020


It's only the third day into the country's national lockdown. Our dog looks on forlornly at the front gate in the hope that one of us will take her out for a quick walk. 

It's no use explaining to her why she can't go walkies, but I feel her pain. There's probably a certain part of her that knows what's going on. Over the past few days, she's taken to having longer naps in her doggie bed, she doesn't wag her tail as often as she used to.

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For pet owners across SA, it's a conundrum that has no solution. For those short on space, it's even harder. The Guide Dogs for the Blind Association wanted to spread some positivity with footage of their puppy cam, and give some advice to dog owners to keep pets entertained in these uncertain times.

Here's what they had to say:


Find a suitable chew toy for your dog, one that they ideally like.

Play "catch"

Play a game of tug or catch for a few minutes. Give them the cue to drop and then reward them with a treat.

Physical exercise

A hide-and-find exercise is a great way to let your dog release all that pent up energy, and keeps them mentally stimulated.

For those who have feline friends, it's important to focus on health. The folks at Whiskas shared the below tips:

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Maintain good dental hygiene

Good oral hygiene can help prevent diseases or secondary infections, such as liver, heart, kidney, and joint disease from bacteria originating in the mouth and spreading through the body via the bloodstream. A cat's teeth needs to be well taken care of and kept clean.

Brush your cat every day

While cats are very clean creatures with saliva containing natural deodorants and cleansing properties, they do need a little help every now and then. Some advocate a bath once in a while, if your cat is willing, but the best thing to help your cat with grooming is regular brushing.

Clean house

Cats are clean freaks, so be sure to keep their litterbox clean and fresh. If you don’t, the risks are that particles from a dirty litter box can be transferred to pets and to humans.

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Give your kitty vitamins (if she needs them)

If you cat is generally healthy, a good quality food is all that is needed. However, if your pet has a vitamin A or vitamin D deficiency as instructed by the vet, you can provide her with the appropriate supplement.

Provide toys

Toys aren't just for fun. They provide some much-needed exercise for your kitty, and help prevent boredom. 

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