Is there such a thing as too much exercise/walking?
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Thread: Is there such a thing as too much exercise/walking?

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    ksweber's Avatar
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    DefaultIs there such a thing as too much exercise/walking?

    We live in NYC and walk a TON on city sidewalks. Not so much off-leash, crazy running/jumping/fetch/playing, but lots of long, steady walks - errands in neighborhood, walking kids to/from school, etc. - like probably 1-4 miles per day, broken into 2-3 outings (plus a couple more pee breaks), depending on the day. Is this too much for a 4 month old pup? She seems perfectly fine with it, and pleasantly tired/mellow when we're in the apartment (which is great with me). Is there such a thing as too much walking at a young age - skeletal/joint damage? Thanks.
    Meet Maisy!

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    BigBrownDog is offline Senior Member
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    I would not walk her more than 20 minutes at a time. As she gets older, she can go longer and harder. She can do multiple walks a day - but limit the time.
    Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.

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    HersheyK's Dad's Avatar
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    I believe the guideline is 5 minutes of exercise per month of age. The big question would be what is exercise. If the dog is walking freely with you, i.e. you are not forcing her, and it is broken up into several shorter walks, the dog will probably be okay. Just don't try to push too far or too long at any one time.
    Hershey Kisses, In charge of getting Ed out to the dog park so that he gets some exercise.

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    Bob Pr. is offline Senior Member
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    The generally accepted JL rule of thumb is 5 minutes of vigorous exercise/day for each month of age (up to 12).

    However, just as Labs differ a great deal in many traits, they also differ in exercise needs.

    The most important thing to do is: to learn to read your Lab

    It sounds to me as if you're doing that.

    Puppies will sleep, be active, inquisitive, want to play, want to sleep.

    When there's a good mix of all of these, things are going well.

    I prefer offleash exercising to on-leash walking because I can more easily tell from her self-directed pace and attitude where she's at.

    But doesn't NYC have some dog runs or places you can take a Lab for off-leash exercising?

    I thought I saw that mentioned in the NYTimes weekly series, "The Puppy Diaries"

    Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]

    Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
    http://forum.justlabradors.com/showt...?p=748#post748

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    Thanks Bob. I agree about the benefits of off leash, and we do that when we can - mostly when we're out of the city on weekends. The challenges for me in the city are: (1) the dog parks, while fun, are often a madhouse socially - lots of dogs, lots of jumping and tussle, really dirty/dusty ... more "wild west" than "calm training" opportunity. You can take dogs off leash in Central Park before 9 AM, which is lovely - big lawns, etc. But nothing fenced (or haven't found a good/small fenced area yet), and with her being so young and very tentative recall, there are pigeons and other dogs to chase, plus lots of fast bikers and cars. Very fearful of her running off! Any ideas on all this much appreciated!
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    HersheyK's Dad's Avatar
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    ksweber,

    Jan 08, I was in NYC. Being an early riser, I was in Central Park every morning between 6 and 9. It is great that your dogs can go off lead there in the early morning. Most of the dogs I watched were really good. Try going over with a long lead. start with 15 feet, then 25, maybe 50. Pup will get more exercise and more opportunity to enforce recall. Good luck.
    Hershey Kisses, In charge of getting Ed out to the dog park so that he gets some exercise.

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    Bob Pr. is offline Senior Member
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    I agree with HK's/Ed's suggestions. Braided nylon rope 1/4" diameter will work fine. (HINT: always wear gloves because grabbing a whizzing check cord will cause rope burns.)

    Also, look up online "The Puppy Diaries" which appears weekly in the NYTimes; it's a weekly column about raising a Golden in NYC. Some of the readers' comments -- or e-mailing the author -- may alert you to other resources in NY City.

    ALSO, it's very critical for a young puppy to be socialized in playing with other dogs, IIRC, long before 25 weeks of age.

    If this is not done, they may never be comfortable or friendly around other dogs.

    So please, PLEASE, make this socialization a part of your pup's weekly routine. Look for other Lab/GR/any breed friendly puppy owners and arrange playdates, either outside or inside.

    Last edited by Bob Pr.; 10-04-2009 at 10:21 AM. Reason: to add info re: check cord
    Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]

    Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
    http://forum.justlabradors.com/showt...?p=748#post748

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    MyPupsHandsome is offline Junior Member
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    that was something I was wondering too, when I first got my Lab. the first nite I took him for a walk about a track and we went about 4/5 of a mile! I guess he was okay with it, but sometimes when we went for walks, he would get tired quickly and want to lay down. I'd let him lie down for a few minutes, but he sure didn't walk as much as I wanted to...
    He did like to run loose though on the track, that was great fun for him... and he also got to meet other puppies that way..

    I wish I had another puppy owner he could play with regularly. We've met his sister and exchanged phone numbers with the owner. I wonder if it would be good if he played with his sister? We don't live far from each other.

    Now he's almost 6 months old, I see no problem with walking him for an hour. Is that a problem? I am an avid walker, so I need to get my exercise too.
    Plus being cooped up in the house, I think they need MORE exercise than a dog allowed to be outside.

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