Dog walking: Different breeds, different needs

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Professional dog walking requires the walker to have a good knowledge of what dogs need what exercise. Many will assume that dog walking can be approached with a standard mind-set of all dogs requiring the same time on walks. However this is simply not true.

Depending on the breed of dog, a suitable walk could be anything from 15 minutes to an hour. In general most canines require between 30 minutes and two hours of exercise in one day.

It is almost always best to split this time up throughout the day, with two or three separate walks.

Many factors affect how much exercise a dog needs each day from breed, to age, to body type. For example, an eight-year-old Yorkshire Terrier is going to need far less exercise than a two-year-old Labrador Retriever.

Professional dog walkers could be required to walk any number of dogs in a single day so working out this balance is crucial.

Breeds such as Border Collies, Springer Spaniels, German Shepherds and Labradors need a lot of engaging. Typically these breeds need around two hours of exercise in a single day.

On the opposite side of the spectrum, with smaller breeds such as Shih Tzus, Yorkshire Terriers and Bichon Frises 40 minutes per day will suffice.

Whippets and greyhounds, breeds which perhaps appear as if they need a lot of exercise fall somewhere in the middle. Toy Poodles and West Highland Terriers are two other breeds that require between 60 and 80 minutes of exercise a day.

The PDSA provide an excellent resource for leaning about different dog breeds’ needs.

It’s not just the length of the outing to consider if you are dog walking though. Mental stimulation is as important to dogs as physical stimulation.

Some dogs will love the familiarity of a regular route, but changing things up can be an excellent idea. New places to run, new places to sniff and new faces to meet can work wonders for a dog’s mind.

People may assume that dog walking is a simple profession, and on the whole it is. However careful considerations do need to be made when you become a walker.

Assessing the needs of your dogs, essentially your customers, will allow you to deliver the best service. Build a reputation as a tailored dog walking company that takes into account the requirements of each individual and it can be a thoroughly rewarding profession.

Please visit our Dog Walking Insurance page to ensure your business is fully covered for all eventualities.