If anyone has advice on how much to exercise my puppy, Todd, for the best results for his bone growth, I would greatly appreciate it. I had a boxer mix who ended up having bilateral TPLO when she was 3. She died almost 2 years ago after another battle with lymphoma at the age of 6. So needless to say, I want to do what is best to give my new little man the best start possible. Any advice on how much to run and play, and taking stairs would be much appreciated. I am a pretty active person, I take my dogs pretty much everywhere I go, including to work. I also have an 11 year old Welsh Corgi and have had great luck with his health so far. I know no two dogs are alike, but after what I went through with my boxer, I am a little paranoid. Thanks, Debbie
Danika & Eva
Thanks for the reply. That is pretty much what we have been doing. He figured out the stairs himself by following me everywhere in the house, and yesterday was a beautiful day here in VA and we played in the yard. We were secretly working on our training w/ his retrieving skills and he enjoyed that game! He sat, we rolled the ball and he brought it back! Then he played with Mr. Utley, the corgi. I'm going to enjoy every bit of it and take your advice by using common sense.
Try to keep his activity on level ground. Studies have shown that puppies/young dogs that exercise over uneven terrain have more joint issues. Also - wait to neuter until mature - 18 months is a good age.
Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.
I've raised several labs over the past 20 yrs here. I think most important is the no "forced" exercise rule (that'd be leash walking on concrete/asphalt, etc). My personal pups have pretty much a free run of 5 A -- all soft ground. I try to avoid any jumping off of even low retaining walls --I have one here that is ~2' that I have a half of an agility A frame up against, so they learn to use it instead. Once my pups are ~5 mos old on avg, and have a GREAT recall (I carry a lot of cookies), they get to accompany the big dogs on off lead walks of at least 1.5 miles but we quickly work up to 3miles when I know the pup can handle it (~6mos on avg). All of this is on soft ground though, and I do start puppy off on leash just to let them know that I CAN put them back on it if need be, but mine have always followed the big dogs like the Pied Piper, so no worries.
I also follow a supplement regime, just in case. This is on my Health page at Home. So far, so good. Haven't had any surprises orthopedically or elsewise for ~15 yrs or so, and in that case, my girl grew unbelievably fast and ended up w/ HD (didnt bother her til she was ~6-7 but still....). Good luck and good for you for asking. And btw, my house is a California split level so there are stairs to everywhere. Stairs haven't been an issue for us, but they are only half flights too w/ good footing and landings. Anne
WindyCanyon Girls, August 2014
That is great advice from you all. Thanks so much.