As a dog-owner, you want the best for your four-legged family member. A proper diet, the right amount of exercise, and plenty of love can ensure a long and happy life for your pup.
However, it can be hard to know how much activity your dog needs. In fact, the top question that concerned dog parents ask is, "how much exercise does my dog need?"
Let's break it down so that you can make sure your dog is getting enough exercise to stay healthy and happy.
How Much Exercise Does My Dog Need?
Determining how much exercise your dog needs depends on its size, breed, health, and other factors. Bigger dogs may need up to two hours of daily exercise while most small dogs are fine with just thirty minutes.
Larger breeds that need more exercise include:
- German Shepherds
- Labrador Retrievers
- Australian Shepherds
- Golden Retrievers
- Border Collies
- Siberian Huskys
- Irish Setters
- Rhodesian Ridgebacks
Several of these breeds were designed to be herders or have another active job. As domesticated dogs, it's important that they still get the exercise they need so they can be the best family dog possible.
Small Dogs and Exercise
If you have a small dog, don't immediately assume you don't need to exercise them too. Some high-energy small dogs do need a lot of exercise to stay healthy.
Small dogs that need more exercise include:
- All Terrier Breeds
- American Eskimo Dogs
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
- Miniature Pinschers
- Poodles (Miniature and Toy)
- Pocket Poodles
- Miniature Schnauzers
- Norwegian Lundehunds
- Tibetan Spaniels
If you have a high-energy dog that doesn't get enough exercise, they'll start acting out to expel their pent-up energy. Trust us, taking your dog out for a few walks every day is much better than coming up to chewed-up pillows.
Dogs with Flat Faces
For dogs with flat faces, also known as brachycephalic breeds, workouts should be kept short or split into a couple of sessions throughout the day. Popular brachycephalic breeds include boxers, bulldogs, pugs, Shih Tzus, Chihuahuas, Bullmastiffs, some Terriers, and some Spaniels.
Dogs don't exercise themselves, so you have to be purposeful with getting in their daily workout. Let's look at the best way to exercise your canine companion next.
The Best Ways to Get in Dog Workouts
If you already lead an active lifestyle, getting in dog workouts won't be difficult for you. Simply take your dog with you on dog-friendly activities like walks, hikes, or runs each day. Playing fetch in the backyard or taking them to a dog park where they can run around off-leash are also great dog exercises.
Doggy playdates with other high-energy dogs are another easy way to get out energy and a great way for your dog to socialize.
If you have a lower-energy dog, one thirty-minute a day is sufficient, or you can split it up into two fifteen-minute walks. Just make sure not to skip walks, especially for smaller dogs who struggle with weight gain if they don't get enough exercise.
Working Out with Your Dog
Daily exercise helps your dog stay fit, protects its joints and bones, and increases its happiness. If you've always asked, "how much exercise does my dog need?" chances are your dog would love an extra-long daily walk.
For more dog-friendly tips and resources, check out the rest of the blog.