Exercise requirements - very basic question
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Thread: Exercise requirements - very basic question

  1. #1
    Cherry is offline Junior Member
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    DefaultExercise requirements - very basic question

    Hi

    I have a 4 month old Lab cross puppy (cross with bearded collie). What exactly are exercise requirements for her? Yesterday we played fetch (3 times in a day and about 15 minutes each time). Our backyard is concrete so she runs on it. Then I took her out for a walk/run - we spent about 20 minutes outside - approximately 5-10 minutes was jogging and rest was walking. I wanted to walk more but she started sitting while walking so I figured she's probably tired so I brought her home. When we came home she wanted to play more fetch but I left her alone and she went to sleep after that.

    So what are exactly the requirements? I've heard that too much exercise is bad for puppies but I've also heard that Labs have high exercise requirements. As you can guess, I'm confused. Like any other Lab owner, I'm a bit paranoid about HD so I don't want to give her too much or too little exercise.

    thanks

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  3. #2
    Cherry is offline Junior Member
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    I just went through the "Our Best Advice" thread and it seems like I'm exercising her way too much and it also seems like jogging with her is a bad idea right now. I just wanted to tire her out since she's always full of energy but seems like it isn't a great idea.

    But then my question is, if she's getting getting enough exercise then why is she digging in the backyard? I thought dogs mostly dug when they were bored etc..
    Last edited by Cherry; 11-27-2010 at 01:09 AM.
    Puppy details:

    Female Black Labrador Cross adopted from rescue shelter.
    Date of birth: 30th July 2010

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    Tanya is offline Senior Member
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    Hello and welcome to the board.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cherry View Post
    Yesterday we played fetch (3 times in a day and about 15 minutes each time). Our backyard is concrete so she runs on it.
    3x a day for 15 minutes sounds good. But the concrete makes me wince. That could have a terrible impact on their growing joints/bones as well as on their pads. It is a very hard surface and I don't know that I would encourage even an adult dog to run on it. Do you have any other options?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cherry View Post
    Then I took her out for a walk/run - we spent about 20 minutes outside - approximately 5-10 minutes was jogging and rest was walking. I wanted to walk more but she started sitting while walking so I figured she's probably tired so I brought her home.
    You already posted that you read running with a puppy is not good. Wait until puppy is fully grown (both bones/joints) which is for a medium sized dog closer to 18 months. Yes they CAN keep up but it puts a negative strain on their joints.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cherry View Post
    When we came home she wanted to play more fetch but I left her alone and she went to sleep after that.
    Very normal, alot of dogs have a burst of energy when a walk/play session is over. It isn't a sign that they haven't exercised enough, just a burst of energy, you did the right thing by ignoring it and making puppy sleep

    Quote Originally Posted by Cherry View Post
    So what are exactly the requirements? I've heard that too much exercise is bad for puppies but I've also heard that Labs have high exercise requirements. As you can guess, I'm confused. Like any other Lab owner, I'm a bit paranoid about HD so I don't want to give her too much or too little exercise.
    Yes a tired puppy is a good puppy but just because a puppy has been adaquately exercised doesn't mean the will be a perfect dog. They are still puppies (and dogs!) so of course they will keep busy even if they are well exercised The goal isn't to exercise them to exaustion so they can't get into trouble.

    Requirements change with age. You still have a baby there so you need to be careful and opt for free play exercise on softer surfaces. don't start setting the exercise bar to high or you can create an energy junkie dog that will always need high stimulation (lots of exercise/attention), find the balance required to have a behaved dog. But don't rely on exercise, rely on a balance of exercice and TRAINING. Around the teenage months the pup's needs may increase dramatically.


    Quote Originally Posted by Cherry View Post
    But then my question is, if she's getting getting enough exercise then why is she digging in the backyard? I thought dogs mostly dug when they were bored etc
    Don't leave her outside unattended if she gets into trouble (digging) - in fact very few dogs at that age will just "behave" outside alone. Or even loose in the house alone! Being bored isn't a direct line from "not exercised enough". they can have plenty of exericse and still be bored.

    I recommend doing more training intervals (keep them short, but do them often) - mental stimulation goes a LONG way.

    As for exercise, the "type" of exercise is what you want ot watch. "forced" exercise, which is on leash and with you setting the pace and distance, should be avoided until they are physically done growing. Hard surfaces should be limited (though most of us still have to walk on sidewalks so just it isn't about elimating them).

    Good exercise is free play with other dogs, fetch on soft surface or really any free play where dog chooses pace and duration, and can stop and go. For some obsessed dogs fetch has to be monitored as well (as they will go on until they pass out).
    Last edited by Tanya; 11-27-2010 at 11:11 AM.
    Charlie (foster) and Rocky

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    Cherry is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks for your advice it answers a lot my the questions. I do not have any other surface than concrete to play fetch on. I could go to the park but doing so 3x a day is impractical.
    Puppy details:

    Female Black Labrador Cross adopted from rescue shelter.
    Date of birth: 30th July 2010

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    kaytris is offline Senior Member
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    if she's digging, there must be something softer than concrete to run on. Or put her on a long line and move to the front yard.

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    Cherry is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaytris View Post
    if she's digging, there must be something softer than concrete to run on. Or put her on a long line and move to the front yard.
    Concrete backyard has few small uncovered patches for vegetable plantation. Certainly not big enough for her to run. Front yard too is fairly small. House obviously wasn't built with dog owner in mind.
    Puppy details:

    Female Black Labrador Cross adopted from rescue shelter.
    Date of birth: 30th July 2010

  9. #7
    Tanya is offline Senior Member
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    LIike I said, I wouldn't even let an adult lab play fetch on concrete. At least talk to your vet about it. Make the effort to walk to the green space more often (once she has had all her shots). Maybe only go twice and do an inside training session instead, and at that age if you have a hallway you can play there (put down a cheap carpet if they slip slide too much).

    I don't have a yard, so I have to get up and walk the dog (and foster when I have one) to the park or green space.
    Last edited by Tanya; 11-28-2010 at 10:59 AM.
    Charlie (foster) and Rocky

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    brody is offline Senior Member
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    May be once a day you could put her on a long line and play in the front yard; once a day head to the park for a crazy game and once a day use the back yard for games that are gentler in nature - rolling a big ball instead of throwing anything for example? Concrete is really hard to work on

    hallways in houses work well for fetch too
    http://andrea-agilityaddict.blogspot.com/

    “I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.” H. Keller

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    MicksMom is offline Senior Member
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    An addition to all the great suggestions you've already gotten- you can make her an area that she's allowed to dig in by putting dirt or sand in a plastic kiddie pool. Bury a few toys or treats in it to encourage her to dig there. Great mental stimilation! Oh- I'd love to see a picture of your pup.

  12. #10
    Cherry is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks for the great advice, I love the idea of playing fetch in the hallway. We have a prominent hallway so should be fun. I will upload the pics soon.
    Puppy details:

    Female Black Labrador Cross adopted from rescue shelter.
    Date of birth: 30th July 2010

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