Can you walk your puppy too much?

As she explained, puppies, especially large-breed puppies, should not be exercised too much, as over-exercising could cause joint and bone problems, and two miles was definitely too much for my three-month-old dog.

Your dog will benefit greatly from exercise both physically and mentally. In addition to maintaining muscle mass, which can help prevent injury, it also helps to maintain cardiovascular health, reduce obesity, or maintain a healthy weight, according to Dr. Associate Professor Wanda Gordon-Evans works at the University of Minnesota, Saint Paul’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

Consider this if that doesn’t motivate your canine companion to get up off the couch: According to Dr., regular exercise can improve your relationship and support your dog’s need for routine. The Downing Center for Animal Pain Management’s hospital administrator, Robin Downing, is located in Windsor, Colorado. Dogs and people get along well because we both value structure in our worlds, which is one of the reasons for this. Dogs truly appreciate the predictability that regular exercise brings to their daily lives because it is in their nature to do so. ”.

However, this isn’t an invitation to overwork your dog. According to Downing, “one myth I occasionally run into is that if a dog is overweight or obese, the owner must then suddenly erupt into a rigorous exercise plan for the dog.” “There is a real risk of joint injury, back injury, respiratory distress, or cardiovascular problem should that occur.” For obese dogs who exercise too vigorously, heat stroke is a major issue (and frequently fatal). ”.

Moderation is key. According to Gordon-Evans, “a lot of the time, the task’s intensity and impact matter more than how long it takes to complete the task.” Running, jumping, or hard play are much more likely to cause distress in a dog with heart disease than is walking. ”.

Read on to learn about some signs of overexertion if you want to start your dog on an exercise routine or just want to make sure your current one is reasonable. Working with your dog’s veterinarian to develop a personalized exercise plan is crucial, according to experts, especially if your dog has health issues, is young or old, or is a breed that doesn’t tolerate intense exercise well.

Playing is more important to some dogs than having sore feet, says Dr Veterinarian Susan Jeffrey of the Truesdell Animal Hospital in Madison, Wisconsin Some dogs will continue to run even after their footpads start to tear. ”.

According to Downing, who is board-certified in veterinary sports medicine, rehabilitation, and pain management, pad injuries can be excruciatingly painful. Like walking on a blister that has ruptured on the bottom of your foot Dogs struggle to get off their feet as quickly as humans do, making any type of walking agonizing. ”.

Look at the bottom of your dog’s paws. Overworked pads may tear and show skin flaps, or they may appear red, worn down, or thinner than usual. If infected, you may see swelling or pus. “Think of concrete as being like sandpaper. A running, spinning, or jumping dog’s pads may be harmed, claims Jeffrey, a preventative healthcare professional.

If the sliding stop is made frequently enough to wear off the tough outer layer of the pad, Gordon-Evans, a board-certified veterinarian in surgery and veterinary sports medicine and rehabilitation, adds that sudden stops can also result in paw pad injuries.

Another indication that your dog may be getting too much exercise is muscular pain and stiffness, according to Downing “This usually appears after the dog has rested after an extended period of exercise.” The owner might witness a struggle when the dog is ready to stand up. The dog might balk at climbing stairs or eating the next meal because it hurts to reach the food dish on the floor. She may even cry out when first moving about. ”.

According to Downing, the worst-case scenario for a dog is exertional rhabdomyolysis, a condition in which the muscle tissue degrades. “As the muscle dies, it causes excruciating and generalized pain. The breakdown byproducts can damage or destroy the kidneys. ”.

By avoiding weekend warrior syndrome, you can lessen aches and pains (as well as other injuries), advises Jen Pascucci, a rehabilitation specialist at Haven Lake Animal Hospital in Milford, Delaware. “Many business owners work all week and squeeze two days of vacation into a week’s worth of exercise.” Since dogs are typically not properly trained, they will often ignore signs of muscle and joint pain and fatigue in order to engage in play and spend time with their owners, which is bad for the dog. ”.

According to Pascucci, a licensed veterinary technician, some dogs have such a strong desire to work and play that they will push through extreme exhaustion and potential injury. “That is the real danger. It is the owner’s responsibility to establish limits and restrain the high-drive dog to prevent harm and exhaustion brought on by excessive exercise. ”.

Dogs can become overheated during the warmer months, which raises the risk of heat exhaustion and heat stroke, according to Jeffrey. It can be fatal if the body temperature rises to more than 106 degrees. In addition to potentially fatal hyperthermia, dogs can also become dehydrated or experience breathing problems. ”.

Because they can’t cool off as effectively as other breeds, brachycephalic breeds, which include short-nosed dogs like Bulldogs, Pugs, Pekingese, Boxers, and Shih Tzus, are even more at risk. In Queens, New York, at BluePearl Veterinary Partners, veterinarian David Wohlstadter “I’d never go for a run with a French Bulldog or a Bulldog; I think that’s a terrible idea. ” But he’s seen it. He continues, “Just because your dog wants to, doesn’t mean it’s safe for them.

Your dog’s age is also a factor, Jeffrey says. Overexertion can also occur in very young and old dogs because they have trouble regulating their body temperatures. ”.

Extreme exercise can impact various dog joints, resulting in strain and sprain. Although the wrist and elbow are also at risk, toe joints are particularly vulnerable, according to Downing. Dogs’ front limbs bear about 60% of their body weight, which puts a lot of strain on the joints. Excessive exercise can cause stifle (knee) joint issues in dogs with very straight rear legs, such as strains, sprains, meniscal tears, and tears in the cranial cruciate ligament. ”.

Some dogs are at greater risk of developing joint injuries. She continues, “which puts their limbs at risk for easy injury in the face of excessive exercise, especially in breeds that are long and low to the ground, like Basset Hounds, Dachshunds, and Pekingese. ” Back problems are also common in these breeds.

Overexertion can result in immediate pain and actually hasten the ongoing degeneration of joint tissues in an older dog with osteoarthritis, according to her.

Jeffrey advises young puppies to get some exercise, “but not too much as it can result in joint problems later in life,” especially those of large and giant breeds.

Dogs with leg injuries may limp or favor one leg over the other, according to Wohlstadter, a certified canine rehabilitation specialist. Dogs occasionally lower their heads when walking on their good leg and raise them when walking on their bad leg. ”.

Also be aware of behavioral changes. For instance, “you might want to investigate this with your family veterinarian if your dog normally likes to run with you but plops herself down on the pavement and refuses to go further,” Wohlstadter says.

According to Pascucci, inconsistent exercise can cause both of these things and injuries. “One hour of unsupervised play does not equal one hour of exercise.” When off leash and left to their own devices, most dogs will engage in short bursts of activity before resting. Injury is inevitable if a dog is allowed to run around and play in the backyard five days a week and then expected to jog 10 miles with an owner the next day. ”.

She advises active dog owners to alternate days of cardio exercise (consistent exercise for at least 20 minutes) and strengthening with one full day of rest, which is a free day with no scheduled activities.

Dogs must exercise to maintain their best levels of physical and mental well-being, but the type of exercise they need will vary depending on their age, breed, health history, and condition. According to Jeffrey, some dogs are built for vigorous exercise while others are not. The endurance of hunting and working dogs is greater than that of brachycephalic breeds. The working and hunting dogs can exercise for a great deal longer before becoming fatigued. ”.

Even though it’s important to recognize the warning signs of overworking your dog, the best way to avoid problems is to work with your veterinarian to develop a safe exercise program for your pet.

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Start with short walks with frequent breaks

Even if your puppy is older, you shouldn’t begin taking him on marathon walks.

It’s crucial to begin with brief walks lasting only a few minutes at a time. Over weeks, build his endurance.

And don’t forget to stop periodically for breaks. He may have to potty or be thirsty.

Important Considerations When Walking Your Puppy

There are many considerations for your puppy’s excursions, in addition to how far he should walk. These include:

Examples of Exercises for PuppiesIf you want your puppy to be healthy and happy, they need to have not only good physical fitness but also mental health. Here are some examples of ways to get your furry friend moving.

  • Use a puzzle feeder or a feeder toy.
  • Play at home, either indoors or outdoors.
  • Invite a small group of friends to come interact with your puppy at your home.
  • When in public places, carry them.
  • Begin teaching and training basic commands.
  • Have doggy playdates at your home with pups that are fully vaccinated.
  • Introduce your puppy to the car and get them used to riding in a travel cage or wearing a seatbelt.
  • Can you walk your puppy too much?


    What happens if you walk a puppy too much?

    Overexertion and excessive high-impact exercise put puppies at risk for joint and bone damage, which can result in conditions like arthritis and hip dysplasia. However, severely restricting your puppy’s exercise could result in boredom, frustration, and behavioral issues.

    How do I know if I’m walking my puppy too much?

    General advice Be alert for signs of exhaustion, such as your pet panting, slowing down or stopping, or lagging behind you. If you notice this, allow them to rest. Keep an eye out for signs of overheating in your pet, such as excessive panting, drooling, agitation or confusion, or vomiting.

    How long of a walk is too long for a puppy?

    In fact, a good rule of thumb for continuous puppy walking is that puppies should get no more than 5 minutes of exercise per month of age, twice daily. Therefore, a five-month-old puppy should only walk for 25 minutes twice daily, and this should be reduced for larger breeds.

    Is 3 walks a day too much for a puppy?

    As a general rule, puppies should be given one to two sessions of five minutes of walking for every month of their age. For instance, a four-month-old puppy could take 20-minute walks once or twice a day.