The number of miles your dog can physically walk will depend on breed, age, and general health. As a responsible dog owner, you should make sure you don’t overdo it.
How many miles can a dog walk in a day? We can’t answer that directly, but we can offer you some good advice.
Ensuring that your pooch is getting enough exercise is essential, but not overdoing it is just as vital to keep your dog strong and healthy.
Not all dogs need to spend every day on a hiking trail, just as not all dogs should be left to their own devices regarding their strolling and exercise needs.
Walking your dog probably seems nice and easy, but some people still don’t know how much is too much – hopefully, you’re not amongst those people! As seasoned dog owners, we’ll help you find the right balance – whether you breed dogs or just love attending to their walking needs.
How Far Should You Walk Your Dog?
We hear you – ‘how long should I walk my dog for if X, Y and Z’? As mentioned, how far you should walk your dog depends on a few key factors:
- Dogs like the Border Collie, Australian Shepherd and Huskies are better suited to long walks and intense physical activities, whereas others are better suited to a stroll around the neighborhood.
- Very young or senior dogs need physical exercise, but far less than adult dogs, and over-working them can cause them significant harm.
Do they have Health conditions?
- Canines with joint or muscle issues, those who are post-surgery or have been recently injured should not be walked for too long. Size matters, too, when it comes to their joint health.
Breeds That Can Walk for Miles
There’s that voice again – ‘can I walk my dog the length and breadth of the South West Coast Path? Probably not – let’s be clear.
Your dog needs daily walks, but some are more adept at long hikes and running for miles on end. Many of these puppies were bred to be working, running, and hunting canines, so this kind of exercise is literally in their blood.
- Border Collie: Border Collies are herding animals and have been bred to work entire days. This makes them perfect for active exercise and walks that go on for miles!
- Labrador: A healthy, young Labrador can walk and even run for miles. They are very high-energy pooches and need over an hour of dedicated exercise per day.
- Poodle: Everyday poodles are high-energy canines and need a lot of exercise every day. They make for great running partners as they stick to a fairly steady pace.
- Husky: Huskies were bred to be working dogs and are naturally very strong and energetic. A husky needs daily exercise and are one breed that can go for as long as you need them to.
- German Short-Haired Pointer: These dogs are typically used for hunting or farm life. That means that they are naturally very energetic and can run for hours on end.
- Australian Cattle Dog: As the name suggests, these canines were bred to herd cattle and are therefore very energetic. Non-working canines will need long hikes!
- Pitbull: Pitbulls should be walked 45 minutes a day, as a bare minimum! These pooches can walk on for miles and miles and need to release that pent-up energy.
- German Shepherd: German Shepherds are particularly fast canines that have powerful leg muscles. Those muscles need good exercise to keep in shape – help them out!
- Weimaraner: Weimaraners are also very energetic pooches and need pretty long walks and hikes to keep busy. If left alone, Weimaraners are some of the worst house-destroying mutts out there!
- Australian Shepherd: Yet another farm-working dog, Australian Shepherds are made for intense and long exercise sessions, so help your dog by taking them on long runs.
Small Breeds that Love Walking
No matter the size, all pooches like and need a good walk; however, we often find ourselves believing that smaller canines should be walked for only short amounts of time.
Contrary to popular belief, many small mutts need and love long walks, for example:
- Dachshund: Don’t let a Dachshund’s tiny legs deceive you, as these feisty little things love a good long walk and will happily take themselves out if need be!
- Border Terrier: Border Terriers are very energetic little dogs and need long walks to help expel some of that intense energy.
- Miniature Pinscher: Miniature Pinschers are big walkers with tiny legs. They need daily physical activity, and they love nothing more than a good, long stroll.
- Beagle: Beagles are also very active dogs and can play and run for hours on end. Taking them on hikes is an excellent way of managing their energy levels.
- Jack Russell Terrier: Jack Russell Terriers will need several walks a day and playtime in between. They are very active dogs and need to be occupied nearly at all times.
- Patterdale Terrier: These little dogs were initially bred to hunt foxes and remain very active dogs. They love to run and to explore new places and scents and need both activities daily.
- Spaniel: Spaniels are known for following scents everywhere, with their noses constantly to the grounds. They are typical hunting dogs and need long walks daily.
- Miniature Schnauzer: These dogs are very energetic and will keep going at a high level all day long. If you are busy and need them to rest a bit during the afternoon, then a good long walk in the morning will do the trick.
- Border Terrier: Border terriers are big walkers and jumpers. They love bouncing around and need stimulation to keep them satisfied. They, too, will need multiple walks throughout the day.
- Westie: Westies are big players and runners and need walks to help with their energy levels and as a training mechanism. The walks will help with their bodies and their minds.
Couch Potato Breeds
While all dogs need physical activity every day, not all puppies need as much exercise as the others. Some will be perfectly content with a quick half-hour of dedicated physical movement.
Among these easy-going pups (who really won’t do well on hikes), there are:
- British Bulldog: British Bulldogs are among the most docile and easy-going dogs out there. Although proper physical activity is essential for them, they do not need intense or long workouts.
- Pug: Somewhat like bulldogs, pugs are relatively calm dogs and only need between 40 minutes and one hour of exercise, maximum, per day.
- Pekinese: Due to their flat noses, it is easy for Pekingese dogs to become short of breath. Because of this, they should not be exercised for more than half an hour every day.
- Boston Terrier: In fact, Boston Terriers can walk for quite some time every day. However, they are relatively calm dogs who do not need more than an hour’s physical activity every day to stay healthy and happy.
- Bassett Hound: It is common for Bassett Hounds to become overweight and need a minimum of an hour’s physical activity every day. However, their walks should be easy and slow, with nothing to tire them out.
- Greyhound: Although Greyhounds are known for their speed and agility, they do not need excessive amounts of physical exercise. They only need about an hour’s dedicated exercise per day.
- Bull Mastiff: These big puppies do not need a lot of physical activity and will be perfectly happy to trot around the garden or go on a few short walks every day.
- Great Dane: Great Danes can walk for quite a while for up to two hours per day. That being said, they will be perfectly content with playing at a milder activity level.
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniel: These loyal little friends will happily accompany you on a walk or a playdate but only really need one hour of physical excursion per day.
- Pomeranian: These energetic little puppies are deceivingly low-maintenance when it comes to exercise. They only need 30 minutes of dedicated exercise per day to stay in good health.
How Far Can a Puppy Walk?
Depending on the age and breed of your puppy, you should be able to walk them from between 10 to 30 minutes per day. When it comes to training and strolling pooches, start them off early.
Exercising puppies for a long time could cause severe damage to their joints and bones that will be with them for life.
For more specific information regarding your pup, contact your vet. From the time your puppy reaches its teenage years, it will be able to walk for far longer.
Again, some dog breeds may vary here – but regardless of dog breed, approach your vet for advice before you start.
Can Blind Dogs go On Walks?
A blind dog needs walks and playtime as much as any other dog. They need to be exercised daily to ensure their good health.
Some dogs are born blind, and some can become visually impaired over time. Either way, your dog will entirely rely on you for their security and happiness.
When it comes to dogs who have become blind during their lifetime, they will be even more fearful and untrusting than a dog who was born blind. That is why it is of the utmost importance that you handle them with care and respect.
Be sure to check our guide on taking care of a blind dog if you’re concerned.
Tips for Walking a Blind Dog
- Always take the same routes. Your dog will learn to recognise the scents and objects around a specific walk, making them feel more comfortable and relaxed.
- Avoid busy times when a lot is going on.
- Start on the lead. If you plan on taking your pet to a park or a field to let them run around and explore for themselves, keep them on a firm lead. It will help reassure them and help to avoid them getting hurt.
- Let other owners know your pup is blind so they can keep their dog under control when introducing them.
Different Types of Exercise
Your dog must always have some daily physical activity. Here are a few different exercises for you and your pet to switch it up a little:
- Walking up and down the stairs (just be careful not to trip over each other!)
- Having your dog chase you around the house
- Playing tug of war
- Swimming (swimming is excellent physical activity for dogs with joint problems or arthritis, as it is easy and efficient exercise)
- Training (training obedience, retrieving and staying, is an excellent way of getting your dog to move)
10 Tips for a Safe and pleasant Dog Walk Every Dog Owner Should Know
Let your dog investigate
Letting your dog stop to smell and discover everything is essential for them to get the best out of their walks. They discover the world primarily through their sense of smell.
Carry plenty of poo bags
There’s nothing worse than running out of poo bags during a walk. Many of us have had the experience of having to use old tissues! It really isn’t worth the hassle, so be sure always to pack enough.
Take some water
No matter how long you plan on walking, a dog always needs access to water. Dehydration can happen quickly. So, always carry a bowl and a full bottle of water.
Use the right lead or harness.
Having good control over your dog is essential for your security, theirs, and everyone around you. This is especially the case for less strong people! We’d recommend a strong retractable dog lead.
Make sure you can be seen.
Your safety must always come first, and although remote dog walks can be ideal at times, you must always be sure that someone at all times can see you.
Pack some treats
If you are training your dog on walks, then packing some treats will only help with the process. They are also a good way of getting a distracted dog’s attention.
Don’t approach unknown dogs.
However good you may be with canines, never approach an unknown dog. Through no fault of their own, they could be highly aggressive towards both you and your four-legged friend.
Play and train
Make the best of the walks that you and your dog take together by taking the time to play and train with them. You will have the benefit of the open space!
Make sure your dog has ID.
Dogs can get lost on walks – no matter how careful we might be. That is why you must always make sure that your dog has a name tag and contact ID.
Wrap up warm
Whatever the weather, a good rule of thumb is to make sure that you pack some warm layers to have with you when you are dog walking. The weather in the UK can change in an instant, especially if hill-walking
Is 5 Miles too far for my dog to walk?
5 miles is perfectly fine for certain dogs. It all depends on several factors mentioned above. if you are walking senior dogs, young ones and what breeds they are. Overdoing it could harm your dog, so know their limits.
Can I walk my dog too much?
Yes, you can walk your dog too much. Like people, dogs need a balanced diet and a balanced exercise regime based on their age and current health state. Over-walking them could cause problems.
Can small dogs hike long distances?
Some smaller dog breeds are very energetic and can hike for a long time. That being said, check out the terrain before taking them on the hike – small legs can only do so much.
How Far can a Husky walk?
Huskies need approximately two hours of exercise every day and can go for miles. Of course, your dog’s activity level depends on their age and physical condition. The weather is also a key factor!
Whether you are going for a quick stroll around the neighbourhood or for a long dog hike, you are doing far more than meeting their exercise needs when you walk your dog.
A puppy needs training sessions to help with their mental health, weight control and build a stronger bond and trust between you and your four-legged friend.
Of course, as dog owners and responsible people, if you are wondering how long should I walk my pooch? Do plenty of research online and consult your vet about our pets’ specific health requirements.
When walking your dog, you’ll need the best accessories and safety products, too. So look into getting a dog carrier backpack for hiking – whether you take your dog up the hills or just down to the dog park.
The health benefits of a good walk – no matter the breed, dog lovers should always strap on the lead and hit the trail.