Puppy Excercise for the Neurotic GSD Owner - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-23-2011, 09:04 PM Thread Starter
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Puppy Excercise for the Neurotic GSD Owner

I'm a new member to these forums (since September when we got Razzle) and I must say some of the "Is this too much exercise?" posts are starting to give me a complex. Some of you are crazy devoted to your dogs and apparently have found out how to squeeze more than 24 hours out of day. I really want to be that person, but I am having a hard time fitting in as much physical activity as some of you do. The time change/shorter days aren't helping either. So, to ease my neurosis, can you all help me determine what is considered too little excercise?

I typically walk Razzle (almost 5 months old) 2 - 3 times a week. 2 times are probably 30 minute walks with some light running in the soccer fields by our house..not sure on distance. On the weekends we may go for a longer walk 45 minutes. I do some tricks/training at home and we dabble in Schutzhund.

So, lay it on me, don't sugar coat it. Am I bad doggy momma? He will eventually get more when he's old enough to go running with me. I run probably 20 - 25 miles per week, but in the mean time I feel like I'm not giving him enough.

Ok, I'm stepping away from the keyboard now.....
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-23-2011, 11:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Razzle J.Dazzle View Post
I'm a new member to these forums (since September when we got Razzle) and I must say some of the "Is this too much exercise?" posts are starting to give me a complex. Some of you are crazy devoted to your dogs and apparently have found out how to squeeze more than 24 hours out of day. I really want to be that person, but I am having a hard time fitting in as much physical activity as some of you do. The time change/shorter days aren't helping either. So, to ease my neurosis, can you all help me determine what is considered too little excercise?

I typically walk Razzle (almost 5 months old) 2 - 3 times a week. 2 times are probably 30 minute walks with some light running in the soccer fields by our house..not sure on distance. On the weekends we may go for a longer walk 45 minutes. I do some tricks/training at home and we dabble in Schutzhund.

So, lay it on me, don't sugar coat it. Am I bad doggy momma? He will eventually get more when he's old enough to go running with me. I run probably 20 - 25 miles per week, but in the mean time I feel like I'm not giving him enough.

Ok, I'm stepping away from the keyboard now.....
Haha, bad doggy mama... no!

I don't often walk my dog. It just doesn't work off his energy enough. Instead, we walk trails, play frisbee/ball and / or go to the dog park. We also have large open fields set far away from roads, etc to just run and explore. That's what we do instead of walking on leash. I get far more bang for the buck, so to speak. However! it is important to consider that you also condition a dog to expect such levels of exercise. I can't always maintain it, especially now that the days are shorter. I've been sick for two days, so Bailey only got about 1/2 hour to 3/4 of an hour of hard play the last two days. I pray I feel better tomorrow. He's not overly nutty, but I think if he only got that little exercise *every* day, he'd become rather unmanageable.

The mental work of training also helps dissipate energy.

How is your dog at home? Is he bouncing off the walls? Difficult to manage? There are definite signs a dog isn't getting enough exercise -- are you seeing any of them? If he seems satiated, satisfied and not crazy nuts at home at night, don't worry too much, mom.

ETA: I don't have any children at home and have the "luxury" to spend basically all my free time with my dog. I'm tired most of the time, he's a full time job in addition to my full time job.!
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-23-2011, 11:30 PM
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I'd say it depends on how much other exercise he's getting overall. I walk my dog 1.5 to 2 hours every day but some days he only gets leash walks with a little play in the backyard and a tiny bit of playing in the house. Sometimes on the weekend he gets a 3-4 hour hike and play time with other dogs.

I enjoy walking and find that if I don't do at least 4 miles a day of fast walking I'm on edge.

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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-23-2011, 11:52 PM
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When Ozzy was a puppy, I'd walk him up to 3 times per day. Then it started to get hot outside (even at night, the ground was still sizzling, so he'd have to have booties to go on a walk), so we just started playing fetch. Of course in the summer, he didn't go as long (maybe 15 minutes or so) before he got hot and we went inside. We'd go out several times per day during the extra hot season. Now that it's cooler, I take him on walks during the day as well as play fetch for up to an hour and a half, and do some flyball training at the park.

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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-24-2011, 12:24 AM
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I don't walk my dogs lol. Atleast on leash. We go hiking in the back woods about once a week. Generally we play fetch and swim fetch as a primary form of exercise. In warmer weather we go jogging, bike riding, hiking etc.

I have a treadmill for terrible weather days as well.

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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-24-2011, 06:30 AM Thread Starter
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I would say 90% of the time time he's tolerable in the house....but he has his moments.

A treadmill huh??? I could see some real benefit there...I could use it and so could Razzle. Hmmmmm
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-24-2011, 07:59 AM
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2-3 times a week is what my dogs get walks. Sometimes more, but 2-3 times is average. It will slow down now that we are getting into winter. They get a lot of fetch games inside the house & out and I don't mind "rough play" inside the house either. My teenage daughters will take them out in the backyard and play with them at least once a day... we don't have a large yard, but it's something.
I have tried the treadmill! My golden won't do it for nothing, but I'd like to be able to get the puppy on it eventually.
There are days that they NEED a walk and no matter what the weather is, I take them.
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-24-2011, 08:13 AM
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I agree that many are over the top at exercising, but in any group there will be some on each end of the curve. I would be one of the over the top or close to it but don't judge yourself based on what others do, judge yourself based on fulfilling the needs of YOUR dog. And be reasonable on how well you are able to fulfill his needs.
Since you are a runner, one thing you can do is do part of your mileage with him. Maybe a mile or so, then come back home, drop him off and do the rest alone. Another thing is intervals; you can go a lot farther with him if you walk and run. You both benefit because he gets to go farther and you get to run faster instead of the boring steady pace.
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-24-2011, 08:20 AM
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I think, also, that dogs can adjust to our lifestyles. To use me and my sister in law as an example - she has 3 GSD's. She "runs" them everyday by getting on her 4-wheeler and giving them a good couple mile run in the country. Her dogs are used to this exercise. One of her dogs is a rescue and was a kennel dog for the first couple years of his life. When she first got him, he couldn't make the entire run, it was too much. Over time, he's now the leader during the runs! My dogs? No way could they do that run - it would poop them out in the first mile.
But now on the other side of the coin - her dogs are rarely mellow and on down time, they are always ready & on the go. Mine have no problem snuggling up in the living room in an afternoon and napping for a couple hours.

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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-24-2011, 08:42 AM
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Lucky plays fetch about an hour to hour and a half a day.Fetch requires 4 different balls and he runs hard for about 20 min. then we switch to one ball so he can practice leave it and drop it.We played for about 20 minutes this am between turkey and dressing getting in the oven, Daisy comes out to play for about 15 min each time and then walks her fence line inspecting her kingdom.She will be 12 on saturday. She was wiped as last night we were cooking upstairs and downstairs same thing today. She did steps about 8 times.She went to sleep on her old bed in the LR. Daisy loves walks but what is a workout for her doesnt touch Lucky so he gets multi ball fetch before I go to work and when I get home.
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