It’s one of the first questions dog owners ask: How often should I walk my dog? The answer? The more the merrier, both for the physical and mental health of your dog and you. There is no general rule of thumb for how often you should walk your dog. The true answer depends on many factors including your dog’s breed, age, and personality. After having worked with thousands of dogs, our team recommends a minimum of three 30 minute walks per day.
Different Breeds, Different Needs
Depending on the type of dog you have, their exercise routine will vary. For instance, a pitbull will need to exert more energy than a small terrier. There are several breeds that were originally bred for hours upon hours of intense physical activity, like herding dogs and hounds. These breeds often have a harder time being cooped up inside and require more time outside exercising. That could mean more frequent walks, longer walks, or an extra play session. To find information about your dog’s breed, check out Animal Planet’s Dog Breed Selector, which has tons of information on the needs of each breed.
Dogs tend to take on the personalities of their owners. If you tend to lay on the couch, your dog might become a couch potato. Active dog owners’ dogs tend to be similarly energetic. If you’re coming and going frequently for work, your dog is also going to want a job (no really!). And the job they assign themselves might not be one you want. For example, my dog decided he is head of security, which means he constantly wants to be going outside to patrol the yard and he’s hard to control when visitors come around. Luckily, adding another walk to his day has done wonders to help solve this issue!
Walks are obviously good exercise for your dog and help to keep high energy or high-strung dogs manageable and happy. They’re an excellent source of bonding time, as well. Dogs that receive attention and exercise are the happiest dogs. Not only is walking good for their physical and mental health, it’s good for yours too. Dog walks allow you to raise your endorphin levels through exercise, provide an often necessary break from screens, and give you the chance to bond with your best friend! They’re an all-around win.
Need someone to help you squeeze another walk into your dog’s day? Download the Barkly Pets app to find a walker near you!