Exercising Your Dog Doesn’t Always Relieve Excess Energy
Living with an easily excited Rottweiler and an always energetic Mini Bull Terrier, I pondered if exercising my dogs would really relieve their excess energy. Group class clients were asking me this exact question too. They would walk, jog or run their adolescent dogs for three to four hours per day (divided up) plus daily sessions at the dog park, yet their dogs still had tons of energy. Hum, what’s going on?
Provide Exercise and Mental Stimulation
Overexercising high-energy dogs can, at times, create a very fit high-energy dog who requires more exercise. With the increase in canine obesity, the pet industry is flooding pet parents with “a tired dog is a good dog” motto, which is a good thing, but this concept needs tweaking for some dogs. I’ve witnessed many pet parents go to extreme lengths to exercise their two-year-old or four-year-old Labs and they still bounced off the walls at home. However, you could bounce a quarter off their thighs–they were that fit!
Exercise is good. We know it’s essential so I’m not saying to put away the leash and turn on the TV. 🙂 Instead of jogging your dog for an hour, take a leisurely walk in a new location and allow your dog to sniff to his heart’s content. Providing mental stimulation (sniffing, puzzle solving or playing games) is mentally and physically exhausting. Allow your dog to walk over, sniff and explore certain spots. It’s almost like your dog is posting on his Facebook page. I know it sounds absurd, but it’s true. Sniffing resembles “reading FB posts,” and some dogs decide to post back by “marking.” Instead of hurrying him along, give him plenty of time to “read and answer” back. 🙂
High-energy dogs thrive moving at breakneck speeds and can literally go from 0 – 100mph in a nanosecond. This is the essence of the AKC sporting group. They were bred for speed and endurance. Convincing your Labrador or Goldendoodle your living room is not a retrieving field can be quite challenging so teach your young or active dog to self-settle. It may seem challenging in the beginning, but ,trust me, every minute you spend teaching this valuable skill is money in the bank. Your dog will soon be able to walk into the living room, plop down on the floor and nap. Ah, wouldn’t this be awesome?