If you have a senior dog, you’ll need to focus on slowing things down rather than building things up (as you would for a youthful pup). It’s still important, however, that ye old faithful companion gets the same amount of exercise as they did in their younger years. With age, everything slows, including the metabolism—and a slow metabolism is a risk factor for weight-related issues or obesity. Whilst the best way to combat this is via an exercise regime, be mindful of your ageing friend. We recommend breaking up their exercises into 15–20 minute blocks over three sessions a day. If your senior dog has arthritis or other joint issues, we recommend activities such as swimming that will not put undue pressure on the fragile joints.
In general, an overworked dog is at risk of such joint and mobility issues. They may also develop respiratory or cardiovascular issues. Prolonged exposure to the elements may put them at risk of heatstroke or hypothermia (depending on the climatic conditions, of course). Worst of all, they may develop anxiety and come to associate negative emotions with the daily walk.
What is the relationship between a dog’s breed and their exercise needs?
Breed plays a large role in determining a dog’s activity requirements. Dogs requiring the largest amount of exercise include the ‘working’ or ‘herding’ dogs, such as retrievers, collies, shepherds, and kelpies. These larger dogs were built to spend their days herding sheep, so it should be no surprise that they will need at least 90 minutes of exercise per day. Smaller dogs—such as Italian greyhounds, terriers, and Malteses (not to be confused with the lighter way to enjoy chocolate)—do not require as much activity. This is even more so the case if you have a brachycephalic (flat-nosed) dog like a bulldog or a pug. Did you know that excessive exercise can compromise their breathing? So whilst smaller dogs will need only 30 to 60 minutes of exercise per day, our smaller, more flat-faced friends will be content with anywhere between 20 to 40 minutes!
Regardless of breed, all dogs will have one thing in common: a thirst for hydration. Walking, running, or exercise in general can be thirsty work. If you’re heading off somewhere new and you don’t know where the next doggy bowl will be, it doesn’t hurt to be prepared. You should invest in a dog water bottle for walking—and we’ve got you covered. Available in four different colours, our 300millilitre Travel Water Bottles come with a slideable water bowl—so you can whip out the water whenever your furry friend needs it! These BPA-free beauties are as spill-proof as they are convenient. Lock it up when you’re not using it and keep your Adventure Kit dry.