Senior Dog Fitness
Taught by Lisa Schmit, PhD, CCFT, CPMP
Senior Dogs need mental and physical exercises too!!!!
As dogs age, they tend to gain weight, become less active, sleep more and lose mental focus. Just like humans, dogs also find it harder to move around due to deteriorating muscle mass, arthritis (or other diseases) and just normal wear and tear on their aging bodies. The less they move, the more muscles atrophy, balance diminishes and the less they move. In order to keep senior dog at the best quality of life we need to keep senior dogs moving. Fitness is essential for keeping our senior dogs mobile and active. A structured exercise program benefits senior dogs by keeping muscles toned and flexible while maintaining balance, stability and function. Conditioning the senior dog also helps to mentally exercises the mind of the dog and also enhances the relationship between you and your dog. The main goal of exercising senior dogs is to keep them moving and functional at life so they can maintain a good quality of life as they age.
Senior dogs cannot do what they once did as young dogs so we must be mindful to create an exercise plan geared toward their physical and mental ability. This class will teach you how to do safe, fun exercises for senior dogs that will help improve body awareness, flexibility, balance, front, hind-end and core strength. It also provides mental stimulation to keep our senior dogs mind working well too!! As a bonus, I will include some massage techniques to use on our senior dogs.
Why Take This Class?
-Learn Fun, Safe Exercises for your Senior Dog
-Lectures on Specific Issues Related to Senior Dogs
-Provide Mental Stimulation
-Enhance Human Dog Relationship
-Learn some Massage Techniques
Who Should Participate?
This class is geared towards senior dogs but any age dog is welcome in this class!
Class Info-There will be discussion threads to ask questions and post video for review. Everyone is a participant. Each class is broken into sections with several lectures within each section. You can post ONE short 3 min video per section for instructional review.
Each section will post to the site every 7 days. Class begins on 9/15 and there are 6 sections/weeks of material. The course is open for video submission, questions, review and comments for 90 days after the first day of class - access to material lasts for 1 yr.
Videos will be shown doing exercises with my 9.5 year old dog Tandem, my 12.5 year old deaf senior dog Synergy as well as my sister’s senior dogs that have none to limited fitness experience. I will also include some old conditioning videos of my 14 and 15 year old dogs.
Equipment: I will primarily be using 2 feed buckets, cones, balance pads and aerobic bench. I will also use other balance equipment but substitutions can be made. There are many possible equipment options using household items such as your couch cushions!
What Level Are the Exercises? Since this is a senior dog fitness class, exercises will be beginner to intermediate level.
A variety of training methods can be used to obtain the proper movement or position - shaping, luring, capturing, targeting and molding. These will be discussed in the video tutorials, in the forum and through video review but every tiny step will not be demonstrated in the instructional video.
The information in this class may overlap or appear in other classes due to the foundation needed for many behaviors, tricks and fitness exercises.
Disclaimer: The information in this class may overlap or appear in other classes due to the foundation needed for many behaviors, tricks and fitness exercises.
Lisa Schmit, PhD, CCFT, CPMP is one of the most accomplished handlers in NADAC. Her consistent, clear positive approach to dog training is evidence with her continual success with multiple dogs! While she primarily competes in NADAC, her training and handling philosophy translates to all venues. Path work is paramount in all venues. Being able to draw efficient lines, speedy independent obstacles, and providing clear and consistent cues help teams compete successfully in all venues from Teacup to USDAA.
Lisa has come home from the NADAC Championships with 10 trophies with 5 different dogs. Nine of her dogs have over 150 NATCHES, over 35 Speed Stars. Eight of her dogs have 140 Bonus Runs (requires big distance skills). Her dogs are consistently in the Top 10 every year and in most categories in the NADAC Hall of Fame. In September 2018, Tandem earned the coveted Purple MODSQUAD award--Master of Distance and Speed which requires high level distance handling and speed. He is the 15th dog in the world to earn this award. JP7 achieved his Silver MODSQUAD in Dec 2018. Revolution only need one more bonus to achieve this award also. At the 2018 NADAC Championships, Tandem was the NADAC World Large Vet Dog Champion and NADAC Large Vet Dog Champion. JP7 was NADAC World Starter Stakes Reserve Champion and NADAC Reserve Champion Starter Stakes (high level distance class) and Distance Bonus Cup Champion. Revolution brought home 1stPlace Team Trophy. Here is a link to 2018 Champs Highlights Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VNRR3D9foggAt the 2017 NADAC Championships, Revolution was Reserve Champion, JP7 achieved 4 sashes in Starter Stakes, and Tandem and Synergy also made it to finals. Amazingly, in 2018 and 2017, her four dogs earned 26 NATCHES and 10 Speed Stars each year! Talk about being consistent at a high levelJIn 2015, Tandem won the highest number of Bonus Points Trophy in Starter Stakes. From 2008-20011, Moxie and Lisa won their class at champs! In 2007, Expedite won the Skilled Veteran Class and in 2006 Haley (Brittany) won Double Digit Class. To view a complete list of accomplishments, videos of runs and photos please visit http://inthezoneagility.com. To view some bonus’ runs http://inthezoneagility.homestead.com/BONUS-RUNS.html
Lisa is a NADAC Certified Clinician, Certified Pet Massage Practitioner, FITPAWS Master Trainer, Certified Canine Fitness Trainer and a member of Bobbie Lyon’s K9 Fit Team. She gives agility, conditioning and massage seminars across the continent. She teaches online classes through in thezoneagility.com as well as through Bobbie Lyons Canine Campus -https://www.bobbielyonscaninecampus.com. Lisa hosts over 15 NADAC Trials yearly as In The Zone Agility and In The Zone Agility of Illinois. Lisa currently has five Border Collies including a young dog aging from 18 months to 12 years old and deaf. Running a deaf dog has brought a new element of training which has made her a much better handler and trainer. She has owned, trained and completed with 12 dogs which have ranged from soft to hard and slow to fast and novice to multiple championships. This allows Lisa to bring real life experiences into her training that includes good foundation training, skill training, motivation and consistent, clear handling all in a fun positive way.
Her goal is to have amazing relationships with her dogs and for them to run fast and confidently well into their double-digit years. The core of her training philosophy is based on solid foundation skills and consistent handling to motivate her dogs in a fun and positive way. She uses a positive reward-based system of training and errs on the side of rewarding too often than not enough. She believes it is her responsibility to maintain cues in a clear, crisp, calm and confident manner. This gives her dogs confidence to trust her cues which builds relationships, speed, drive and distance. As a skill trainer, she focuses on developing, refining and rewarding obstacle performance and handling. She believes groundwork and foundation skills are the building blocks to success. She trains in short fun sequences so she can train various handling options, push for distance and reward often. She trains skills and obstacles so that her dogs are confident in their ability to understand her cues and to perform obstacles efficiently, at speed and at a distance.
Lisa grew up in the horse world training and showing Quarter Horses as well as dabbling on the racetrack. She also played volleyball and softball. The skills learned training and competing in other sports have transferred to dog training. She currently has and runs five Border Collies including a young dog debuting this year to a 12 year old deaf dog. Running a deaf dog has brought a new element of training which has made her a much better handler and trainer. She has owned, trained and completed with 12 dogs (including a lab, a Brittany and an Australian Shepherd) which have ranged from soft to hard and slow to fast and novice to multiple championships. This brings real life experiences into her training that includes good foundation training, skill training, motivation and consistent, clear handling all in a fun positive way.
Lisa is a consummate learner. She continues to take classes and attend seminars whenever possible. She continues to evaluate her training and adjusts accordingly. She puts on many seminars across the continent and in doing so, meets lots of different teams with different issues. This has taught her to be open minded, to think on her feet and outside the box! She loves to be challenged and to help people succeed.
To learn more about Lisa's training philosophy click HERE