Dogs are much like humans when it comes to their activity levels – some need an abundant amount of exercise while others can get away with handfuls here and there. Aside from breed, other factors such as your dog’s overall health and age, can determine how much physical activity is needed to maintain their health. Regardless, regular exercise is key for all dogs to improve their mental health, reduce bad behaviors and even lessen anxiety.
Determining How Much Exercise Your Pup Needs
There is nothing worse than coming home to a house that has been torn apart by a bored or anxious dog. While sometimes this is just the “puppy” phase you cannot get away from, often you can lessen the destruction to your home (and your shoes) by getting your dogs the level of exercise they need. To decide how much exercise is appropriate, consider the breed:
- Sporting or Herding Breeds – These dogs have high energy and are bred for such levels of activity. They need 60 to 90 minutes of high intensity activity once to twice a day minimum. If not, your dog may become bored and destructive.
- Terriers – These are naturally bouncy and energetic dogs, but they do not require as much exercise as herders or sporters. Usually, 60 minutes daily will suffice for these breeds.
- Hounds – Hounds range from scent to sight breeds. Sight hounds do not require as much exercise because they are sprinters; meaning they get a good workout in short stints. Scent hounds, however, have the exercise requirements of sporting and herding breeds.
- Toy Breeds – There are plenty of dogs that will fit into this category, such as Poodles, Maltese and Chihuahuas. These dogs are cute, but active. If they are not exercised, these breeds are at higher risk for obesity – yes it can happen to dogs too! The good news is, these dogs can get their exercise in smaller areas since they are small themselves.
- Brachycephalic Breeds – These dogs have squashed faces, such as Pugs. They have shorter statures and muzzles, so they cannot handle vigorous activity or even jogging. They are at high risk for overheating and oxygen deprivation, so small bursts of activity are better.
How to Exercise Your Dog
Dogs can be exercised in numerous ways, even when the weather outside is less than favorable. You can play fetch, go swimming (if your dog has a love for water), play along with their toys, go for a hike or play indoors. Take cues from your dog when they are tired, such as panting or lying down.
If you are gone during the day, consider doggy daycare so that your dogs get the attention and exercise they need to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Human interaction paired with regular exercise can actually improve your dog’s emotional and mental health.
Camano Island Kennels offers doggy daycare for dogs of all breeds and energy levels. We keep your dog engaged, active and entertained while you are away. With our friendly staff and spacious play areas as well as social activities, you can rest assured your dog will be taken care of. Call us at 360-387-DOGS to learn more or contact us online for a quote.