From our newspapers to our newsfeeds, we are constantly reminded that daily exercise is essential. But keeping fit doesn’t just apply to humans: man’s best friend needs plenty of exercise, too.
Just like us, dogs need to stay active to prevent potential health problems arising in the future. But how much exercise does the average dog really do? We invited 100 people to trial PitPat: a leading activity monitor for dogs. Similar to a fitness tracking device, PitPat attaches to your canine’s collar and monitors activity throughout the day.
So, how did our pooches fare? Take a look below:
- Our customer’s dogs enjoyed more exercise as the week went on. On Mondays, the dogs were least active, in contrast to Sunday, when they did the most exercise. The level of activity increased incrementally as the week went on.
- As most owners worked weekdays, the dogs got most of their exercise on Saturdays and Sundays.
- The most common time for a dog walk was between 9-10am, and again between 3.30-5pm. The most popular walking time for dog owners was at 10am.
How often should you walk your dog?
Dogs love a long walk: fresh air, lots of space and, with the chance of seeing other pups, going out for a wander can be an exciting prospect. But did you know that dogs need walks to help with their mental wellbeing, too?
Just like humans, some time out can help with taming anxiety and calming nerves. It’s thought that if a dog doesn’t get enough exercise, hyper-activity and obsessive-compulsive behaviours can become a regular occurrence. This can be distressing for both pet and owner.
We took to Facebook and Twitter to see how often your dogs went for walkies…
Margaret Bithell on Facebook
Pam Burgess on Facebook
Karen Lee on Facebook
How do you socialise your dog?
Dogs have long been regarded as man’s best friend, but it is not only human affection they pine for: dogs love being around other canines, too.
Taking your dog to a public space is a good way to familiarise them with other dogs and humans. Most dogs will tell you they are happy by showing a few tell-tale signs: they exaggerate their movements, enjoy playing role reversal games with their respective pooch, and can play fight without being too rough.
If you think your dog is showing signs of agitation during play, such as slinking their tails downwards and pulling their lead towards home, try not to give up on them too early on: it is likely they are simply unfamiliar with the surroundings. If you persevere and get them used to being around other dogs, they’ll soon be making new friends!
Arlene Carson on Facebook
Elaine Parry on Facebook
Caroline Murphy on Facebook
Need tips on keeping your dog as cool as a cucumber? Our online community have some wise words…
@coopukinsurance when meeting any new dog owners need to stay calm & encourage interaction, dogs want to protect so will be wary if you are.
— zander (@plaice75) March 16, 2017
— ??Emma Hunt?? (@thecheshirewife) March 16, 2017
When do you take your dog for a walk?
Many owners will have their own routine when it comes to walking times, but the reality is that it doesn’t matter when you do it, just as long your dog is getting enough exercise to sustain their weight.
If you are unsure whether your dog is getting enough exercise, a good rule of thumb is to make sure they are getting at least five minutes of exercise for every month of their age, i.e. if your dog is four months old, you should try to walk them for around 20 minutes each day. As your dog gets older, you can start to work out a walking schedule to suit their size and weight. As you spend more and more time with your pooch, a walking routine will come naturally, so don’t feel pressured to walk them only when everybody else does!
People walk their dogs at all times of the day, just take a look at our online community and their daily routines…
Michelle Jones on Facebook
Brenda Baughan on Facebook
Aida Monica on Facebook
Sylvia Williams on Facebook
What do you do to keep your dog healthy? Get in touch with us on Facebook or Twitter, and tell us your thoughts! If you are interested in seeing how active your dog is, take a look at the PitPat site for more information about their app.