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Published: Nov 04, 2011

As both human and pet obesity is on the rise across the nation, more pet owners are trying to find new and exciting ways to help themselves and their companion pets shed some weight. VCA Animal Hospitals reports that dogs need at least 60 minutes of heart-pumping activity each day to stay healthy.

According to, one way to engage a dog while also helping it boost its heart rate is by playing games with a flying disc, similar to a Frisbee. This act allows an owner to throw a disc long distance, giving the dog the ability to chase and catch it before bringing it back.

This game isn't for all dogs however, as any dog who does this will need to already understand and enjoy retrieving, otherwise it will only be the owners who get workouts.

Before training a pet for games like this, owners should bring their dog to the veterinarian health clinic, where a vet will see if the animal is fit enough to play. Any dog with an orthopedic condition or joint problem such as hip dysplasia, may need to be watched more closely, as the jumping could aggravate the condition.

After the dog is found to be in good pet health, an owner will need to introduce the disc to let the dog know it's a toy. Next, toss it to the dog from a short distance and see if it brings it back. Praise the dog each time it does and even offer it a treat. Once it gets this down, start moving further away and try throwing it higher in the air to see if it will jump for it. Make it more challenging by increasing the distance or throwing it higher.