Owning a dog is a big commitment in terms of time, money and energy; the energy commitment being the amount of time and effort you need to spend walking him. There is no hard and fast rule when it comes to dog walking, and much depends on the breed of the dog. Working dogs like Border Collies, or Huskies and Malamutes, are high-energy dogs bred to work hours daily. These breeds can become bored, anxious and disruptive if not walked for at least an hour, preferably twice a day. On the other hand, Greyhounds, the athlete racers of the dog world, are couch potatoes, happy with a reasonably short walk every day or, if you have space, a run in the garden.
However, whatever kind of dog you have, large or small, pedigree or cross-breed, you have to be prepared to put in the time walking him. If you can’t, you need to consider hiring a dog walker to do so – it will likely ensure your pet ownership duties are met whilst giving you some quality time indoors to train and play with your pet.
Isn’t a garden to run around in enough?
Whilst a run in the garden can provide some exercise, for most big dogs, in particular, it won’t be enough for them. A proper walk is vital for several reasons;
- It provides structured exercise and allows you to reinforce your dog’s training.
- A walk provides vital mental stimulation for your dog so that he doesn’t become bored.
- It allows your dog to meet other dogs and people and gain essential social skills.
Puppies, senior dogs and some very small dog breeds need less exercise but will need to go outdoors more frequently to urinate and defecate; puppies. At the same time, they are house-training, of course, and seniors when they begin to lose a little control over their bodily functions. When a puppy is a very young, too much exercise can overtire him or potentially damage his growing joints, so he will only need five minutes twice a day to start with, increasing by an extra five minutes per month of age until he is fully grown. Your senior dog will go the other way, needing much less if he suffers from old-age complaints like arthritis. But in both cases, getting them out in the fresh air is still important.
What is important to remember is this: your dog can’t walk himself, so you have to do this for and with him every day. If you’re struggling, from either poor mobility or lack of time, as you may have had a long day at work and the last thing you want to do is go out again, I’m always here to take care of your London dog walking needs. Just think of the benefits of all that lovely fresh air and exercise will do for your dog. Please check out my services.
Ditch the walk
hang on. You have just told me my dog needs a walk to go out, get the fresh air, check wee email, and socialise. Yes, this is true. However, circumstances may prevent you from walking, such as extreme weather or injuries
As well as walking your dog should ideally have one day a week which is a rest day. On this day, you can play games to help with training and mental stimulation.
As a games-based trainer, I can help develop a menu of games specific to your dog. Just contact me for more info.