Dogs are man’s best friend. They’re cute, furry, and love their owners unconditionally.
But are we doing everything we can to show them that we love them in return?
Sure, you feed your dog and make sure he has water. You snuggle with him when it’s time for bed.
Do you give your dog enough exercise?
Are they slowly getting overweight?
Do they seem depressed?
Exercise is so important in a dog’s life! It’s vital to keeping your dog happy and healthy.
Why is Exercise so Important for Dogs?
Just like humans, obesity is on the rise for dogs.
20-40% of all dogs that go to the veterinarian are overweight (1). That might be because their owners are overweight and don’t take their dogs out for exercise.
Overweight dogs have a harder time dealing with heat and have decreased levels of stamina and speed.
Obese dogs are more prone to arthritis, back problems, torn ligaments, cardiac problems, and difficulty breathing.
Dogs that don’t get enough exercise are also prone to behavioral problems. All the built-up energy can result in chewed shoes, furniture, and bathroom accidents in the house.
Obesity is relatively common in older dogs as their ability to be active decreases, and their caloric intake increases. Older dogs may snack on treats and are typically given an abundance of food thinking that it will keep an older dog’s energy up.
If you have an elderly dog that is suffering from obesity, there are a couple of different exercises you can try.
Your dog will live longer if they lose weight and stay at a healthy weight. The problem is that playing fetch and going for frequent walks aren’t always an option for elderly dogs.
Swimming is a great exercise to alleviate joint pressure, and it also allows cardiovascular exercise without joint pain.
Try finding a dog-friendly pool, river, or lake to take your dog. Make sure you’re right next to your dog while they’re in the water. You could even have them wear a life jacket as they paddle their paws.
So, what kind of breeds need the most exercise?
Let’s go over some of the dogs that require a little extra attention on the exercise front.
Dog Breeds That Require More Exercise
A lab is one of the most common family-owned dogs. They are loyal, kind, and very patient.
They’re also one of the most commonly owned dogs in the United States.
The sad part is they are also the most commonly overweight dogs, although some labs have a genetic disorder that prevents them from feeling full, which causes obesity.
A large portion of overweight labs don’t get enough exercise. This might be attributed to the fact that a lot of labs are owned by busy families that might not have enough time to give their dogs the exercise they need.
Labs are hunting dogs at their core and can have a lot of built-up energy if they feel like they aren’t getting the exercise they need. Try giving your dog more of a workout if they seem like they’re behaving worse than usual.
German Shepherds are extremely smart and dedicated to their families. They’re also massive dogs!
Big dogs can tend to be overweight because their owners overestimate the amount of food that they actually need.
Make sure you aren’t giving your German Shepherd more food than necessary, otherwise you might see their weight increase quite a bit.
German Shepherds are frequently used as police dogs or in the special forces. This is due to their natural speed and incredible athletic ability.
Make sure your German Shepherd is getting the exercise he needs. Give them a job to do and they’ll stay at a healthy weight and behave better.
We can all recognize a pug when we see one.
They are characteristically rolly.
This means that a lot of owners don’t even realize that their pugs are overweight, thinking that the way they look is typical for a pug.
Since pugs are prone to being overweight, it’s essential that they receive enough exercise.
Yes, their legs are short and stubby so make sure you’re patient when taking them out for walks. It might take them a little longer to walk certain distances.
Pugs can also be overweight because exercise is a little harder for them to easily exercise due to their body type.
Rottweilers are big, strong, and muscular. Often times they are used for protection because they can be very intimidating.
Unfortunately, Rottweilers are prone to being overweight. An overweight Rottweiler can be mistaken for strong and muscular.
Big dogs are also more likely to get arthritis, especially if they’re overweight.
Take your Rottweiler out frequently! Play fetch or take them on hikes. Don’t let them become overweight. It will increase their chances of having a lot of other health problems.
Border Collies are considered one of the most intelligent dog breeds. They have a breed mentality which gives them an extremely high energy level.
Because of their high intelligence, they require jobs to keep their bodies and minds in good shape.
It requires a lot of daily exercise to finally wear out a Border Collie.
If you have doubts about the exercise levels you’d be able to provide for your Border Collie, you might consider getting a lower energy dog.
Many Border Collies engage in sports such as frisbee, tracking, agility courses, or races.
Jack Russell Terrier
These little dogs are known for their high energy levels. It seems as though their legs have springs! They’re able to jump as high as fences and catch balls thrown several feet into the air.
A lot of Jack Russell Terrier owners become frustrated at the amount of exercise that’s required for a Jack Russell Terrier.
These dogs are also well known for getting into trouble if they don’t get out their energy.
They especially love to chew on things and get into the trash.
Save yourself a lot of trouble by providing the correct amount of exercise for your Jack Russell Terrier and you’ll both be a lot happier.
Many families have had and loved a Golden Retriever. They are a great family dog and they love running around with kids.
They’re also fantastic water dogs. They love jumping in lakes to fetch sticks and could almost do it all day.
Chances are you’ll get tired of throwing the stick way before your Golden is tired of fetching it.
Make sure you’re giving your beloved dog enough exercise so that they’ll continue to be the happy dog you love.
A dog can be totally different if they feel like they have too much energy and don’t know what to do with it.
A lot of dog owners commonly mistake smaller dogs for requiring less exercise because of their size.
Although big dogs do need a lot of physical exercise, small dogs also require frequent fetch sessions.
Boston Terriers are definitely one of these breeds.
A back and forth toss of the ball once a day won’t be enough to curb your Boston Terrier’s craving for exercise.
Make a plan and stick to it! Make sure your dog is getting the exercise it needs. Your dog will be more obedient and loving when they’re appropriately exercised.
Chewing on This Information
This can be a lot to take in.
You might be feeling like you won’t be able to provide your dog with its proper exercise requirements.
Giving a dog the proper amount of exercise doesn’t need to be daunting. It might just make you healthier too.
Go on walks, go for a hike, go swimming, play fetch, go to the dog park, or take your dog running.
You’ll both see the benefits of regular exercise in both your lives and see what a difference it can make for each of you.