How Long to Walk a Dog

Walk a dogWalking with a dog is a great bonding experience between the person and the dog. It is also good exercise for both, which is certainly needed by both the dog and the walker. A little caution and common sense can make it a safe and fun event for both.

The amount of time someone spends walking the dog depends on a few factors, especially the breed of the dog, age of the dog, and the weather or temperature. Here are some tips for the amount of time to walk a dog without risking injury or health problems. As with everything health related, if you have specific questions about a dog, speak with the dog’s veterinarian.

Walking a Puppy

Taking a puppy for a walk is a lot of fun. They are so excited at everything. The walker must keep in mind that a puppy needs time to grow before it can handle a lot of activity. A six month old puppy can go for a 30 minute walk with its handler. A month old dog should only be taken for a few minutes at a time. As the puppy grows older, increase its walking time.

Walking an Older Dog

An old dog is sure to benefit from walking, but the owner must make sure the dog does not do too much at first. A good idea is to find a place where the walking is easier also. Avoid too many hills and set a slow pace. Too much walking at first may cause the dog discomfort and it will not want to go anymore.

Walking an Overweight Dog

Walking an overweight dog is a very good idea. It is important not to overdo it at first. Just like a person should not start an exercise routine by running ten miles, a dog should not start with overly long walks. Take the dog for short walks and let it rest when tired. Gradually increase the distance and pace of the walk. Eventually, the dog will be able to walk longer and will probably lose weight in the process.

Walking in the Winter

A dog that walks every day will be better prepared for the winter than one that has spent the fall indoors. In either case, if it cold enough for the walker to wear a coat and gloves, it is too cold to keep the dog out for an extended time. Keep it to a half hour and bring it home. Some of the smaller animals or those with very short coats will need a sweater to wear to help with the cold. In extreme weather, be careful with your dog and do not let it run off into the snow. Animals are vulnerable to frostbite also.

Walking in the Summer

Depending on where you live, the summer months can be brutally hot and there may be very high humidity. Depending on the breed of your dog, you should consider shorter walks when the temperatures soar. Short nosed dogs like pugs and bulldogs shouldn’t be in the hear very long. No matter what breed of dog you have, make sure you carry water in the hot weather.

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