Weekly question: How far do you walk your dog?

How far do you walk your dog?

I am queen of exercising my dog. That is one thing I can brag about. Ace and I walk (or run) every day no matter how bad Fargo’s weather gets. We might miss one day a week on rare occasions, but it is rare. A walk is the one thing I can do for Ace to benefit his health and behavior.

Since I started a dog-running business I have slacked a little with my own dog, though. Lately I’ve been walking about two or three miles a day with Ace instead of the five-mile daily runs we did for about a year. But really, I’ve found that as long as Ace gets about a 40-minute walk in the morning, he is settled and just fine for the rest of the day.

If you have a dog with any “issues,” one of the first things I’d recommend is to take her on a long run every morning. It’s the simplest advice, really, and so few people actually do it.

How far do you walk your dog? You do walk her, right?

13 thoughts on “Weekly question: How far do you walk your dog?”

  1. Pepper gets walked daily for about a mile at least. She’s so little and at age five, she’s way more relaxed than when she was in her tweens… as a pup, I walked Pepper about six times a day!! Two of those times were long walks, often with off-leash playtime and wrestling with selected buddies. That really amazed me, how totally exhausted she would get from wrestling and chasing her buddies. Sheer bliss for the puppy-keeper. Pep is still up for a big hike, like five or six miles, any time, and we try to do one of those at least once a week. PS: Glad to hear that Ace’s eyes are getting better – of all the things to happen!! How strange. He’s lucky to have you! — Bonnie

    Bonnie Storys last blog post..After the Rain

  2. I dont have a set distance that I take mine. Each one has a little different need for exercise. Saints are quite sedentary and require far less than the labs. Apollo and Hera require the most exercise and in addition to a walk need to be taken to the dog park for a good romp or a swim to burn off the extra energy that I can’t keep up with.

  3. Biggie would much rather socialize with the people and dogs in the dog run, so every weekday AM we walk 1 -2 miles roundtrip depending on the run, plus play time in the run. Then it’s 2 short (1/4-1/2 mile each) walks in the evening and before bed. He plays hard in the run, though, and we play and “work” (on commands and tricks) at home.

    Weekends he will hike with us (a few miles), and when he goes to doggie day care it’s a 4 mi walk + a day of play.

    Overall, like Lora’s Saints he is pretty happy to just hang out with us, but I have noticed that on days we miss the dog run he is a little more wound up at night.

    There are a number of things I don’t agree with Cesar Millan, but one I do is – a tired dog is a happy dog!

    Biggie-Zs last blog post..Timber!!!!

  4. I’m lame. We don’t walk our dogs nearly as often as we should. Definitely not daily. And even when we do it’s twice around the neighborhood…maybe half a mile. Which is fine for Kodiak and Quinn who are injured/older but not nearly enough for Trooper and Timber.

    However…I do feel a little less guilty since Trooper gets two hours of agility training each week. And he and Timber get to go to daycare at least once a week (after which they are plum tuckered out).

    And hubby plays/wrestles with Timber a LOT. Even after nearly 6 hours in the kennel yesterday Timber was worn out from wrestling with papa.

    I do wish we walked more though! *sigh*

  5. I usually take a 20 minute walk after dinner every night even in winter. All though my dog sometimes refuses to go when it gets really cold. But I always try to walk her dailey. She doesn’t like the rain or real cold weather.

  6. My husband and I try to walk our two dogs every day, but in reality it’s probably more like every other day. The two dogs genuinely love it! As soon as we say the work “walk” they are up and ready to go. They enjoy the mental stimulation of being out of their yard as much as the physical exercise component. Plus, it is a perfect opportunity to practice, practice, practice that skill of walking “nicely”. We are no where near perfect with that, but making progress. With winter approaching, it becomes more challenging, but we plan to “keep on walking!”

  7. That is such good advice. An unexercised dog will quickly become a very naughty dog! I always without fail take them for a minumum of two walks a day. Always at least 15 mins but usually much more. I have the advantage of open country straight outside my front door so normally no need of a lead etc.

  8. I live in Finland, where our pet culture seems to be very different from yours (at least that’s the impression i get from reading books, whatching tv-shows, reading threads like this one etc etc). If I would ask a dog owner if he/she walks the dog every day, it would make a pretty excellent joke – I have never in my life met a dog owner who doesn’t walk the dog on a daily basis. A more appropriate question might be “How many hours do you spend on excercising your dog?”.

    Rain or snow, I walk my dog three times a day, for at least an hour, plus I go out last thing in the evening before I go to bed for a quick walk round the block. In miles maybe 10-15 every single day. If my dog wouldn’t get her walks for, say, a week, I’m pretty convinced I wouldn’t have any furniture left at home if I would leave her for a couple of hours.

    I’m aware that I spend a lot of time on my dog, even from a Scandinavian point of view, but this is something I take great pride in; I consider not giving your dog excercise and attention animal cruelty.

    For those who think my dog is a herding or other working breed: she’s a 10 pound bichon frisé. After walking 10 miles, I’m about to die of exhaustion and she’s just getting in the mood :). Even though she looks like this little cute cotton-ish cuddly thing, she’s more of a dog than any of my previous dog’s (Giant Schnauzer & Bear hunting dog)…

  9. Lindsay Stordahl

    Makudaman, thank you for your comment. I really can’t stand it when people think their small dogs don’t need to be walked. I wish more people in the United States would walk their dogs regularly, even for an hour a day – even a half-hour! You set a great example for us! I’m sure your dog is very happy and well behaved! One question though, how do you find three hours a day to walk?

    1. they have more time than us Americans who have to work much longer hours than most countries,and they get more vacation paid time off than us as well! I think it’s great that the dog gets so much exercise!! I walk mine an hour in the am and hour in pm….I too have little dogs a toy fox terrier and Jack Russell/Yorkie mix. They walk probably 6 miles a day and they are exhausted when we get home,and after an hour of general horseplay and training they sleep all night!

  10. I recently became a “snow bird” and have been walking my puggle 1-2 miles per day. How can I tell if this is too much for her. The temps have been in the upper 70s to lower 80s. Also, when we take her to the off leash dog park, she loves the other dogs and runs constantly but has drool pouring from her mouth. Other owners have asked if she is sick.

    1. Lindsay Stordahl

      It’s hard to know, so it’s better to be on the safe side when it’s warm out, especially since she is a “shorter faced” dog. It sounds like she is handling 1-2 miles OK but maybe getting pretty hot? If she is breathing really heavy, almost hyperventilating or has a really long tongue, I would take some water breaks in the shade. At the dog park, I would keep the sessions short and make her take a break from running/playing every 10 minutes or so. Just put a leash on her and have her sit or stand in the shade and get some water.

      You know your dog best, so use your best judgement. Did she live in a colder climate with you previously? How did she do on walks there?

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