Exercise is Important for Dogs

Is my dog getting enough exercise? 

It is not uncommon for dogs to show behavioral issues when they are not getting enough exercise and mental stimulation.  If your dog is showing signs of stress or acting up, talk with your veterinarian to make sure that they have a clean bill and let them know about what regular exercise your dog is getting.  In addition to getting out excess energy, exercise is also great to help dogs combat obesity.

The amount of exercise a dog needs varies based on many things such as their breed, age and fitness levels.  Not all dogs of one breed will have the same exercise requirements as this can vary drastically from dog to dog and thus it is important to learn the amount of exercise that your dog prefers. Some dogs are happy with a slow 30-minute walk daily while others would prefer to be running around on the farm all day long.

Puppies and exercise

Puppies have a lot of energy!  With puppies it is important to talk with your veterinarian about an exercise schedule.  You want to provide them with enough playtime and exercise but also be careful not to overdo it as they are still growing.

One great way to help tire puppies out is by engaging their mind.  For puppies mental stimulation can play a huge roll in helping dogs to feel tired and content.  Some good exercises for puppies include teaching them new tricks, puzzle games for finding their food, and playing hide and seek with them.

When exercising your puppy be mindful of where you are.  You want to keep puppy away from dog parks and unknown dogs until they are fully vaccinated.  In addition to having your puppy vaccinated, starting them on a good probiotic such as CaniOtic is a great way to help them develop a strong immune system.

Adult dogs and exercise

Adult dogs are often when you will see a lack of exercise appear in the form of behavioral issues.  Different breeds of dogs often require different amounts of daily exercise, and it is important to know what is standard for your breed as well as how your own dog responds to different amounts of exercise.

In addition to talking your dog for daily walks or runs your dog might also enjoy time socializing with other dogs.   Some ways to let your dog socialize with other dogs are trips to the dog park, a weekly trip to doggie daycare, playdates with friends who have dogs and taking your dog to eat at a pup friendly patio restaurant.

Adult dogs can still learn new tricks and work on tricks they already know.  This is a great way to keep them mentally stimulated.  Puzzle feeders are also a great way to get your dog using their mind.

Senior dogs and exercise

As dogs age they often require less daily exercise and enjoy a bit more time on the couch.  That being said, it is still important to make sure that your senior dog is getting the exercise that they are able to physically handle.   Your senior dog may prefer a short 10–20-minute walk stopping to sniff everything along the way over the hour-long speed walk they used to enjoy.

As dogs age the risk of obesity goes up, so keeping an eye on the amount of food and treats they are getting as well as providing them with exercise is a great way to help them maintain their weight.