Doga: Yoga for Dogs

People practice yoga for various reasons. Some use it as a form of exercise, some find it relieves stress, and others appreciate its regenerative benefits. Now there’s another reason to take up yoga. If you’re crazy about your dog, you can now include Max in your yoga sessions.

Originating in New York, yoga for dogs is called doga. Dogs who practice doga are called dogis. Most pooches enjoy a good stretch after a nap, and many yoga postures come naturally to them. Workshops teaching yoga for dogs are popping up around the country. Many instructors think it’s great to encourage dogs into natural positions but urge dog owners to not actually place their dog into poses.

No scientific research has been done on the effects of yoga on dogs but satisfied owners insist their dogs seem more relaxed after a session. Quite possibly, doga, like massage, could benefit abused dogs or dogs with behavioral problems.

Jennifer Brilliant and William Berloni published ‘Doga: Yoga for Dogs’ in 2003. The book is written in a lighthearted manner that both dog lovers and yoga fans can enjoy. A gallery of photos portray dogs in various yoga positions and breathing exercises. If you’re a dog lover and a yoga fan, you may consider presenting the book as a gift to your yoga instructor.

Doga is the up and coming thing is dogdom. For a new way to connect with your best friend, grab the mat and try a session with your dogi!

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