2 min. read

How much exercise does my dog need?

Bo Vanbeselaere (Veterinarian)

Just as for humans, exercising is good for your furry friend’s mind and body too. Burning off your dog’s energy throughout the day helps to avoid negative behaviour. Another plus, exercising also keeps your dog in shape. So let’s keep our furry friends happy & healthy, let's find out how much exercise your dog needs!

How much daily exercise your dog needs depends on their age, breed and health.


As you have probably noticed, pups have waaay more energy than adult dogs. So that means they also need more physical challenges. We recommend taking multiple short walks throughout the day, as most puppies can't do long distances yet. As a rule of thumb, you can use the following:

You’ll also soon get familiar with ‘zoomies’. This is when your puppy is running from one side of the house to the other like crazy. This is totally normal and nothing to worry about. It’s just another way to release excess energy.

Adult dogs

For adult dogs, it all comes down to their breed and health. Some breeds are more active than others. Terriers, Border collies and Retrievers for example need a lot of activity, about 1-2 hours of exercise a day. Other dog breeds like Chihuahuas, Pomeranians or Maltese need about 30min of exercise a day. A very big difference. So keep this in mind when deciding on which dog breed you want to get/adopt. In general every dog needs at least 30min of exercise a day.

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Does your dog have health problems? Then it’s best to check with your vet on how much exercise your dog needs a day. In general, you can always check with your vet if your dog requires more or less exercise. They have made an analysis of your dog’s health, and will be able to give you personalised advice.

Senior dogs

Even when your dog gets older, exercising is still just as important as for a puppy or adult dog. As your senior dog’s joints might be a bit stiff, it’s good to adjust the intensity of the activity to your dog's health and mobility. Go for multiple short walks during the day instead of one long one. Swimming is also very good for your dog's joints and therefore an ideal exercise for seniors.

Fun activities to stay active

Other than walks, there are many other fun activities you can do with your dog. More time with your dog = more time to bond. Some good old games like tug of war are great for burning lots of energy. Want something less intense? Read our blog about fun indoor games for inspiration. Teaching a new trick is also a great exercise to engage the mind & body. In this blog we share the step-by-step plans of 4 easy tricks.

Also read: Why are healthy dog treats so important?
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