How Much Exercise Should I Give My Dog? | iPetCompanion

How Much Exercise Should I Give My Dog?

Worried about your dog not exercising? You’re not alone. This is a common concern among pet parents. But worry not, you can solve this.

Exercise is crucial for all dogs, regardless of their size and age. Although their needs vary, physical activity will always be important for their health.

If your dog isn’t able to exercise, he’ll feel bored and stressed. Even worse, this can result in them developing obesity and destructive behaviors.

How Much Exercise Does Your Dog Need

There’s no chart that tells the exact amount of exercise every dog needs. However, there are several factors that you can consider. Here are some of them:

Breed. Active breeds, such as Terriers, Shepherds, and Retrievers, will need more exercise. You need to take a sporting breed dog to exercise for at least 60 minutes a day. There are also breeds, such as Border Collie, that have a higher tolerance to heat and can endure longer playtime outdoors. Less active breeds can manage with at least 30 minutes of exercise per day. This includes Yorkies, Great Danes, and Pugs.

Dog size. Long walks aren’t ideal for large breeds, such as a Great Dane, although they can certainly keep up. These type of dogs grow fast but mature slow. You’ll need to wait until they have grown fully before introducing them to certain physical activities. Generally, the smaller the dog, the shorter you can walk them since it takes less for smaller dogs to get their exercise in.

Genetic Limitations. It will be difficult for a short-nosed breed to engage in a physically demanding exercise as this can affect their breathing. Dogs with narrow bodies should not exercise right after eating as this may result in bloating. There are also dog breeds, such as greyhounds, that aren’t for long distance walks or runs.

Age. For puppies, their exercise can consist of short walks throughout the day. They should also be allowed plenty of nap time. For older dogs, they may be able to keep up with longer walks. As dogs get older, they also get tired faster. They’re no longer capable of keeping up with long walks.

Physical limitations. Handicapped dogs may also enjoy walks around the neighborhood. You can also ask about water activities that they can participate in.

For a start, always consult your veterinarian on the appropriate exercise plan for your dog. Start slow, observe his response, and level up your routine accordingly.

Don’t Forget Mental Activities

Exercise isn’t only about physical activities. Don’t forget to also engage your dog in mental activities. These activities will also help them fight boredom and make them happy and healthy.

Give your dog puzzle toys or games like treat hunt. Some people also like to use pet monitors which allows them to interact with their dog when they are gone. Letting them spend quality time with you is a must. Even if you’re hiring a dog walker or are having someone care for your dog, still spend time with them when you’re at home.

Make eye contact with them and play with them. If possible, take them with you as you go outdoors with the entire family.

Safety Tips for Dog Exercises

Here are some tips for a safe work out session with your furry best buddy.

  • Start slow and work your way up according to your dog’s response.
  • Give them or her plenty of breaks.
  • Train your puppy to walk and behave well on a leash.
  • Don’t go outdoors when it’s too hot or cold.
  • Avoid slippery surfaces.
  • If your dog seems inactive, let your vet know right away.

Types of Exercise for Your Dog

Add variety to your dog’s exercise routine. Here are some activities you can have them participate in.

  • Tugging
  • Chasing
  • Swimming
  • Walks
  • Runs
  • Hide and Seek

Eventually, you’ll know your dog better. You’ll find out when your dog wants more exercise or when he already feels exhausted. Happy dogs make happy owners. And giving dogs the proper amount and type of exercise will also help keep them healthy.

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