Effective Tripawd exercise can increase stamina, improve balance and strength. But longer walks and open water swimming isn’t the best place to begin. First, you need to start building up your Tripawd’s core muscles. Maggie’s story is a perfect example of the benefits of working on building a good, solid core.
Dogs need strong core muscles just as humans need strong stomach muscles to avoid spinal issues and maintain good balance.
One of the best examples of a Tripawd who has achieved the ideal canine amputee fitness level is Maggie the Agile Cow Dog. It’s been a joy watching Maggie go from surgery recuperation to flowing gracefully on the agility course:
Maggie’s strength didn’t come naturally. She can do what she does as a senior dog because of her mom Tracy’s dedication to keeping Maggie strong, lean and fit. Tracy says “I work Maggie about three times per week (or more during winter) on the therapy equipment.”
How to Do Maggie’s Three Legged Dog Workout
Tracy says “The amount of repetitions varies but typically I do three reps per exercise (1 rep = 1 reach toward a hip, for example). Here’s Tracy’s explanation of what she’s doing in the video:
Maggie’s Balance Pad Routine
Here is what Maggie is doing in the above video:
- Reaching for treats: Present treats at shoulders, hips and between front legs
- Sits, downs and stands
- Weight Shifting: Manually rocking her side to side and front to back – not knocking her out of position but just shifting her weight some.
- Walking on and off Balance Pads: sometimes stopping with either front feet on or off, leaving rear foot on or off
Maggie’s Balance Dome and Balance Disc Routine
Watch Maggie’s video and see how she’s doing these exercises:
- Front feet on: Reaching for treats side to side as far as she can to hold balance
- Front feet on: Reaching between front legs for treats
- Back foot on: Reaching for treats side to side and between front legs
- Front feet on: Maggie rotates around the dome with front feet remaining on in both directions – this is more challenging on the side where her leg is missing
- Obstacle course: Walking onto dome and then onto Balance Disc as a ‘mini obstacle course’
Stay tuned for more of Maggie and Tracy’s fantastic tips, including how to create your own Tripawd agility course.
If you have three legged dog fitness tips you’d like to share, let us know!