A question that is often debated is how much exercise do dogs actually need? There is no straight-forward answer to this question as your dog's exercise needs vary based on your dog’s age, breed and health. For example, a 10 month old golden retriever puppy is going to require more exercise than a 7 year old Miniature Schnauzer. To make things even more complicated, the needs within a breed of dog vary based on age.
Generally speaking, a good rule of thumb is your dog should be slowed down by the time you stop. My dog Harley is quite high energy and is a leash puller so I know I have adequately exercised her if she is no longer trying to run around by the end of our walk!
A few guidelines for exercise for your dog:
- Most dogs need a minimum of 60-90 minutes of physical activity daily
- Active breeds need a minimum of 30 minutes of hard aerobic exercise on most days of the week (ideally daily). Taking your dog for a jog or run with you is a great opportunity to bond with them (plus good health for you!), or providing a safe area for them to run are great ways to exercise your high energy dog.
- It is a misconception that most small breed or toy dogs get enough exercise inside the house. Certain small breeds, such as pugs, are prone to obesity and therefore require consistent outdoor exercise.
- Exercise benefits dogs both physically and mentally. It is also a great opportunity to bond with your dogs and maintain an active and healthy lifestyle yourself. Try exploring a new hiking trail or take your pup to agility classes!
- A tired dog is a good dog!