Can puppies go on walks?

Reading Time: 3 minutes
Editor of Dog Articles
Written By Editor of Dog Articles

At What Age is it Safe for Puppies to Hike?

Your young, sprightly pup is full of energy and will be your closest adventure buddy in years to come. Don’t go to the trails just yet. Young puppies are not suitable for long hikes.

Before you embark on those big adventures, you need to consider your pup’s age, size, breed and health.

Your pup’s limbs will grow longer in their first year of life. While your pup is still growing, they are at risk for growth plate injuries.

Growth plates are soft regions at the end of your pup’s bones. Growth plates are vulnerable to damage from trauma.

The age at which your dog is ready for hikes will vary.

Growth plate injuries that occur before your pup is eight months old tend to be the most devastating, and may result in deformities that require surgery. Dogs are vulnerable as long as they are still growing, which can be one year old for small dogs and 18 months for large dogs.

Ask your vet if your puppy is ready to hike.

What Activities ARE Safe For Puppies?

Hiking, fence- running, agility, and even playing with older dogs can be considered forced exercise because your puppy may overexert itself trying to keep up.

When your puppy is still growing, it’s best to stick to activities that don’t exceed the exercise level they would get from playing with other puppies

5 minutes of walking per month is the general rule. A 4 month old puppy can walk up to 20 minutes twice a day.

That rule only applies to easy walks around the neighborhood. Most people who hike want to take their puppies on the trail right away.

See also  Is burt's bees puppy shampoo good?

A few laps around your local park can be a good way to introduce your puppy to the idea of hiking.

The terrain can be more difficult for a puppy. You might want to cut the time rule above. A 4 month old puppy would start out with only a few minutes on a trail.

Lift your puppy out of the car if you have to. Don’t let them jump out on their own.

As your puppy approaches a year of age, you can begin taking them on shorter hikes. The general time limit still applies. The further you can go, the older your puppy is.

A puppy can hike for 60 minutes at a time, which is enough to cover 2 miles.

Take frequent breaks, even if your dog doesn’t seem tired, and look for signs that they’ve hiked too far, but aim to stop long before that point

You have to worry about more than growth plate injuries. If you don’t gradually work your way up to long hikes in rough terrain, you could suffer from overexertion, dehydration, heat stroke and muscle tears.

A strong recall

When hiking, keep your dog on a leash. Your dog may not always be attached to you.

They can fall out of their harness. The leash could break. You may eventually want to allow your dog to be off leash in a safe area.

Practice recall every day until your dog responds to your call or whistle.

greeting other dogs

It is not necessary for your dog to say hello to every other dog on the trail. It is good to socialize your puppy because you will inevitably run into off-leash dogs. They are comfortable with random greetings.

Your dog has no choice but to have another dog in their face when your dog is on a leash.

See also  Why is my puppy not eating and sleeping a lot?

Try to keep your dog focused on you. It is more important to be comfortable than to learn to tolerate stress.

If you have a little patience, and focus on light exercise and training while they are still a puppy, you will have a fit and well mannered trail dog in no time.

Politely greeting other dogs

It is not necessary for your dog to say hello to every other dog on the trail. It is good to socialize your puppy because you will inevitably run into off-leash dogs. They are comfortable with random greetings.

Your dog has no choice but to have another dog in their face when your dog is on a leash.

Try to keep your dog focused on you. It is more important to be comfortable than to learn to tolerate stress.

If you have a little patience, and focus on light exercise and training while they are still a puppy, you will have a fit and well mannered trail dog in no time.

Signs of over-exercising puppy

You need to be careful not to over exercise your puppy. It’s just as harmful to over-exercising your puppy as it is to under-exercising them. Large and giant breeds are at risk of this as their growth can continue up to 24 months of age.

There are signs that you are over-exercising your puppy.

The muscles are stiff or sore.

On hot days, over-exercising your puppy puts them at an increased risk of overheating. There are warning signs such as excessive panting, drooling, confusion, and vomiting. Take your puppy to a cooler area if they display the signs.

Water should be applied to your puppy’s fur, skin, under legs, and belly. Fan your puppy with your hands. Take them to your nearest veterinary clinic. If left unattended, heatstroke in dogs can be fatal.

Share on:

Leave a Comment