Here are 10 expert tips on exercising your adorable pet dog this winter – including indoor options when the weather turns bad

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Many of us decided last year to welcome four-legged friends with us – according to Kennel Club numbers, dog ownership has increased by almost eight percent – so many households will enjoy their first winter with their new family member.

Despite the cold weather, it’s important to follow an exercise routine for your dog to keep him happy and healthy, especially since pets can become more likely to have joint stiffness during the winter months.

Regular exercise helps maintain joint mobility and prevents weight gain, which can put stress on the joints.

To keep your pooch moving during the winter months, here are 10 top tips from pet health expert nutravet.

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If your pooch still enjoys winter walks, wrap them up warm and use a dog coat if necessary to keep them cozy. Wear light or reflective clothing on darker nights and mornings and walk your dog in well-lit areas. Avoid icy streets and sidewalks and clean your dog’s paws when you get home to remove any ice, salt, or grit that can cause irritation.

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If your four-legged friend is too cold outside, you can get him moving with some indoor games. Here are a few ideas.

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Get your dog a tug of war to enjoy a good game with him. If you have more than one dog, you can let them play together. However, keep an eye on them as this type of game could encourage aggression.

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When you have enough space in your home, create an area to play in. Make sure it is on carpeted floors as hard wood floors can cause your dog to slip and injure himself. To avoid repetition, throw different items for them to pick up and return.

Photo: Canva / Getty Images