Are you walking your dog too much?
Regular exercise is important for any dog, even in these strange times - but are we walking our dogs too much? According to Google Trends data, that is the question many pet owners are asking themselves.
Searches for 'exercises for dogs' and 'am I walking my dog too much' have gone up "almost 100%" for the second half of April. As it has been the case in several countries in lockdown, dog owners may be walking their pet more often as an 'excuse' to get out more themselves. A man in Spain was even caught walking a toy dog!
A new resource, Work Out Your Walkies, has been launched to help dog lovers "calculate the amount of exercise their dogs need each day to stay fit and healthy, according to their breed and age" - and to work out how many laps around your garden that amounts to!
Vet Zoe Costigan BVSc BSc(hons) Cert AVP MRCVS added, "Chances are your whole family might each be taking the dog for a walk as a reason to roam outside and leave the house. "There’s a fine balance between too little and too much. It’s a good idea to ensure your dog gets out a couple of times a day, because they don’t have too much to stimulate them in the home. "For some active breeds, like a collie or spaniel, one hour of exercise a day is negligible for their energy levels."
Above is a general indication of the distance and time you need to spend walking with the UK's most popular dog breeds, according to leading dog behaviourist Nick Jones MA. But keep in mind this is a rough estimate, and that exercise needs vary from dog to dog depending on personality, health, and age. And, if you'd like to make each of your steps 'count' for a good cause, here's how.