Are you a proud owner of a new golden retriever? Congratulations! As beautiful, lovable, and kind as they are, it's important to ensure your furry friend is getting enough exercise and the best kind of exercise for them.
Today we'll explore how much exercise your golden retriever needs, what activities benefit them the most, and why it's so important for them to stay active over the course of their lives. Let's dive in!
The Recommended Amount of Exercise for a Golden Retriever
It might be hard to believe, but this affectionate, fun-loving family dog was originally bred as a working dog, primarily for hunting. Breeders wanted a dog that could handle retrieving waterfowl for hours and that’s what they got. So Golden Retrievers have a lot of energy to burn!
To avoid this, simply make sure they get the proper physical (and mental) stimulation for their age. Individual dogs are different, so the best way to make sure your dog is getting enough exercise is to watch him and monitor his behavior. But here are some general rules of thumb as a starting point.
As a Puppy
Golden Retriever puppies have lots of energy, but tire quickly. Start by taking your puppy on short walks or jogs around the neighborhood.
Start with about 5 minutes a day for every month of age. So three-month-old puppies need 15 minutes, four-month-old 20 minutes, and so on. Overexercising can be a detriment to developing bones and joints so don’t push them if they don’t seem eager.
As they grow older, you can increase the length of these walks.
As an Adult
When Golden Retrievers are in their prime, they’ll need maximum exercise — at least one hour per day. As they grow older and stronger, they won’t tire as quickly as they did as a puppy. Their bodies need sufficient mental and physical stimulation or they’ll become bored and frustrated.
Just like humans, individual needs will vary so watch your dog for signs that they need more (or less) exercise. Some dogs may require as much as two hours of exercise per day while others may be happy with 45 minutes.
All sorts of activities count. Playing fetch, working agility courses, walking, running, hiking, and swimming are all great activities you can enjoy with your pup.
As a Senior Dog
As your Golden Retriever gets older, their exercise needs will change but regular physical and mental stimulation is still important. Like humans, dogs age at different rates. Some will start having mobility issues earlier than others so keep the activities appropriate for your dog.
In general, just keep doing what you’ve always done but make the sessions shorter if your dog seems tired.
How to Best Exercise a Golden Retriever
Exercising your golden retriever doesn't have to be complicated. For starters, take them on regular walks around the neighborhood. Not only will they get some physical exercise, but they’ll also get to explore new sights and sounds which will keep their minds active too.
Once they're a bit older, longer hikes are great for getting more of a workout in while allowing them to take in nature's beauty at the same time.
Playtime is a great source of exercise for dogs of all ages. Fetch games are always popular with Goldens as is tug-of-war – both activities provide excellent physical activity while being fun for your pup at the same time!
Swimming is another great option if you have access to a local pool or lake. Not only does it involve lots of movement but it also helps to keep your furry friend cool in hot weather too.
Finally, don’t forget about mental stimulation; activities like agility courses provide both exercise and something new for them to think about all at once! So whatever kind of workout you decide on for your pup, just remember that having fun together is key!
Activity Trackers Can Help
Looking for an easy way to keep track of your dog’s daily activity level? Fi smart dog collars make it easier than ever. These slender, smart collars feature an activity tracker that counts your pup’s steps and even gives you daily, weekly and monthly goals to meet. It’s almost like a FitBit for your dog that will help you stay on top of Fido’s fitness routine.
What Happens if They Don't Get Enough Exercise?
If your Golden Retriever doesn't get enough exercise, it can lead to some serious health issues. Without regular physical activity, their joints will become stiff and weak which can cause pain and even arthritis if left unchecked.
Additionally, a lack of movement can also lead to weight gain. Excess pounds put extra strain on the heart. This makes them more prone to developing conditions like diabetes or other heart-related illnesses in the future.
However, long before these health problems start to crop up, you’ll probably notice the lack of mental stimulation. Without proper exercise and mental stimulation, dogs get bored. And bored dogs chew on furniture, dig holes, and mess with whatever they can get their paws on!
So, keep your pup mentally and physically fit with a proper amount of exercise. It’s a great way for the two of you to spend time together, plus it will help you reach your fitness goals as well!
For more helpful articles about pet-parenting tips, check out the Off Leash blog at TryFi.com.
Want to know more about TryFi.com? The Fi Dog Collar is a GPS tracking collar that not only keeps track of your dog’s location, activity levels, and sleep patterns, but it also alerts you if your dog escapes your backyard. This is the fastest way to find your dog after an escape. Try the Fi Dog Collar today!