How much exercise does your dog need?

You shouldn’t assume that small dogs always need less exercise than large dogs as well.


Walkies. It’s that little word that drive dogs nuts. After all, getting out and about for some exercise with their favourite human (that’s you) is the absolute best. From smelling every tree in the forest to catching frisbees in the park, it really is the highlight of their day.

When it comes to walkies, our routines are as different as our dogs. At some point we’ve all been left wondering ‘did they get long enough today?’ or ‘did I push them too hard?’

It’s really important make sure your dog is getting the right amount of exercise. Too little and they are at risk of obesity and behavioural issues, too much and they could do damage to their joints, especially whilst they are young.

It can be really hard to judge whether your pooch has had enough exercise when you start to factor in everything they’ve been up to, from playing in the garden to pottering around the house.

That’s where PitPat comes in.

With the free PitPat app you can get a tailored exercise goal for your dog, that takes in account their age and breed, which automatically adjusts as they get older. Then, with a PitPat dog activity monitor, you’ll be able to keep track of all their activity and see if they are hitting their daily goals.


There’s a big difference between a Bichon Frise and a Border Collie – and we’re not just talking about looks. Every dog breed out there has different exercise needs. Whilst some will be satisfied with a couple of 20-minute walks, others will need at least 90 minutes a day to keep them healthy and happy.

You shouldn’t assume that small dogs always need less exercise than large dogs as well. Some terriers have very high exercise needs thanks to their backgrounds as working dogs, whilst many large dogs, including greyhounds, are more inclined to be more at home on the sofa than out on a walk.

To find out how much exercise your dog’s breed usually needs, just pop their details into the PitPat app to get their tailored exercise goal.

“You shouldn't assume that small dogs always need less exercise than large dogs.”


The age of your dog can have a big impact on the amount of exercise that they need.

For puppies, they will need to have their exercise limited, including all that time spent playing. This is because they can do long-lasting damage to their joints if they are overexercised whilst they are still growing. What’s more, puppies need plenty of time to rest so it’s important that you’re able to monitor their activity and send them for a nap if they need it.

At the other end of the scale, senior dogs will start to slow down in their golden years. You’ll need to watch out for stiffness after walks, increased rest, and reluctance to go out for long periods of time. If your dog shows these signs, it’s time to reduce their exercise to something more manageable.

For both puppies and senior dogs, keeping track of the time that they spend exercising and resting is crucial to keeping them happy and healthy. That’s why, when you use a PitPat, we adjust their exercise goals to make sure they get just the right amount.


There will be times in your dog’s life where they need to temporarily reduce their activity. PitPat is here for you during those times – you can easily reduce their exercise requirements whilst they are rehabilitating and increase it as they get back up to speed. What’s more, it’ll help you keep track of everything they’re up to throughout the day so you can make sure they don’t overdo it.


Just like humans, dogs have a range of fitness. If your pup is normally a couch potato you can’t assume that they will be fine with that mountain ascent you’ve been planning.

When deciding how much exercise they can manage you need to consider what they are used to. Whilst most dogs can go a little beyond their normal routine, pushing them too much could be disastrous (just ask the owners of the St Bernard who needed rescuing from Scafell Pike this summer).

To get your dog marathon ready, you need to steadily increase their exercise every day. You can keep a record of their progress using a PitPat dog activity monitor and so you can be sure that they are raring to go when it comes to the big day.

Of course, for some dogs, climbing a mountain or running a marathon will be out of reach. Make sure you keep a close eye on them and if they are finding it hard, reduce their activity to a more suitable level.

So, whether your dog is a pace setter or a plodder, it’s important that they get just the right amount of exercise. Find out exactly how much activity they are doing every day with a PitPat dog activity monitor for just £39.

Our Expert

PitPat is the UK’s number one dog activity monitor. Their mission and values are one of the reasons the team at K9 Nation love them….

“We’re made for dogs. Made to help you keep them healthy and happy. Made to help them get the most out of life.”

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