How often do you walk your dog? Is it daily? Weekly? Each dog has different exercise needs and it’s up to you to help meet them.
Factors to Consider When Walking Your Dog
When it comes to figuring out how often to walk your dog and how long, you have to consider some things, as each dog has different needs. A small dog that spends most of their life cuddling with you is going to have different needs than a large dog that goes hiking with their owners on weekends. Things like your dog’s age, breed, weight, and current lifestyle should all play a factor in figuring out how long and how often you take your dog for a walk.
Dogs of different ages have different needs when it comes to walking and those needs should be considered and met. Young dogs and puppies are bursting with energy and may go for long walks whenever they can. However, an older dog getting up there in years may only be able to go on a short walk and not want to do anything but take a well-deserved nap.
Some dog breeds came about to help people with jobs, and have become working dogs, while other dogs have become comfort companions. Because there is such a wide variety in dog breeds that all have different needs and energy levels, you need to take into account your dog’s breed For example, a working dog like an Australian Shepherd might need longer and more frequent walks than a Chihuahua.
You need to be aware of your dog’s current lifestyle when determining how often to walk them and how long they can walk. An obese dog who never got to go on walks isn’t going to be able to walk for a long period of time. However, by monitoring and adjusting your dog’s walks based on how they do during and after can help you create a schedule for your dog to get them in better shape and keep them in shape.
Just because they may not be able to go for long walks when you start doesn’t mean they’re incapable. If you have a personal goal of running five miles, you don’t expect yourself to reach that goal immediately, but will ease yourself into it and get used to the distance and exercise and the same applies to your dog with their walks.
Determining How Often to Walk Your Dog
Your dog is going to have their own limits and it’s up to you to make sure they don’t overdo it. You yourself also have limits, though they may be different. You may not have enough time to walk your dog, or you may not be able to physically walk your dog, but this shouldn’t prevent you or them from getting some exercise.
Determining Your Dog’s Exercise Limits
To determine your dog’s limit when it comes to walking, start by taking them on an actual walk. Keep track of the time and notice when your dog starts slowing down, as this means they may be getting tired. This may be the time to turn around and head home. Make sure to pay attention to your dog and note if they keep the slower pace consistently, or if they slow down further. Once home, watch your dog for a little while to see how they’re doing. If they appear injured or limping, they may have strained themselves and if they drink a lot of water and take a very long nap, they may have over-exerted themselves. Use this to tailor the walk length to keep your dog comfortable.
Working With Your Schedule
Most people can’t be home with their dog all the time, and that’s okay. If you can’t, you should try to get a 10-15 minute walk in once a day, but if even that’s too difficult, you can shoot for a walk 2-3 times a week to keep your dog active. If you want and can afford to, you can always hire a dog walker.
How often do you walk your dog is a question only you can answer. Your dog has their needs and limits and you may have a conflicting schedule. Do your best to meet their need and yours.