Are you fortunate to be the pet parent of a Poodle? Are you wondering how to exercise your Poodle and for how long? Then you’ve come to the right place!
Poodles are energetic dogs who love to stay busy and active! Not as much as some other dog breeds, yet they do appreciate some great fun activities. Whether you have a Toy, Miniature, or a Standard Poodle, you have an active fur baby!
In this article, we’ll review the Poodle dog breed, and then get on to some fun activities you and your dog can enjoy together!
What is a Poodle?
Poodles tend to be highly intelligent, elegant, and proud dogs. They can have a regal attitude; however, behind this demeanor, you’ll have a dog who wants nothing more than to be with his family.
The good news is that Poodles are very trainable and will be happy to spend time with you learning new things. Did you know that Poodles were once working dogs? They were trained to be water retrievers!
There are three sizes of Poodle, with all being categorized as the same breed. These are the Toy (smallest version), the Miniature, and the Standard (the largest).
Each size of Poodle loves to be active. They’re playful and have one of the highest levels of intelligence in modern dog breeds. Plus, they’re very trainable, and they excel at obedience, agility, and even hunting competitions.
Poodles are people-friendly, which makes them very devoted to their family. They can develop separation anxiety if left alone for long periods, however. You may come home to chewed up shoes, houseplants and their containers dragged across the floor, or even the couch chewed up!
So, you may also want to consider training your Poodle. This helps him to understand the boundaries, he learns to look to you for cues, and he doesn’t think he’s the head of the house. Poodles may try to be the alpha; however, training can tame this behavior.
Another great benefit to training is the dog uses up his energy and keeps his mind active at the same time. This can keep your dog from becoming destructive.
When it comes to size, Poodles can stand from 10 to over 22 inches tall, and weigh between 6 to 70lbs! They have an average life span of 12-15 years.
So, how much exercise does a Poodle need? Let’s take a look.
How Much Exercise Does My Poodle Need?
No matter the size of Poodle, they all need at least 30-60 minutes of exercise daily. This helps to keep them from becoming bored (and thinking of mischief!), while also keeping them healthy. They need at least one long walk a day, though one more walk would probably be better.
Not only does exercise help in these ways, but it can also relieve aggression and irritability (when kept cooped up for too long), destructive behavior, barking, and more. Exercise also helps the dogs to sleep better, as it also works to improve their mood.
The best thing of all is that your Poodle wants to spend time with you! So, regular walks and other types of activities can create a deep relationship and bond between you two!
Considerations When Exercising Poodles
You want your Poodle to benefit from exercise, so you’ll want to keep these things in mind:
- Make sure the activity is low impact, especially if they’re involved in strenuous sports. Anything more could put pressure on ligaments and joints, which can lead to injury.
- Walking is great and you can start out slow. This way, you can gauge your Poodle’s endurance. Once you two become accustomed to these walks, then you can gradually begin lengthening them.
- Keep in mind that Toy Poodles probably won’t be able to keep up or take very long walks. This is due to their short, little legs! So, you may end up carrying your Poodle home but do make sure to play with him to help him wear off all that energy!
- Keeping to a regular schedule is also beneficial for Poodles.
Watch Out for Overexercised Dog Symptoms
Poodles have plenty of energy and stamina to keep ongoing. So, you’ll need to monitor your fur baby as you walk and participate in dog sports or other activities. This is especially true in the summer. Here are some of the symptoms you may notice if your Poodle’s been overexercised:
- Exhaustion after exercises—may take a while to recover
- Excessive panting during & after exercise
- Extreme thirst
- Lagging behind, when normally in the front
- Lameness, limping
- Sore, stiff muscles
- Look overtired after exercise and/or sleeping and laying more than normal
So, be sure to monitor your dog for any of these symptoms, or other health issues that may arise from overexercising.
Best Activities & Exercises for Poodles
In this section, we’ll take a look at some of the best activities and exercises your Poodle may enjoy!
1). Walking Your Poodle
Daily walks are essential to your Poodle’s health and well-being. Remember, they at least 20-60 minutes of exercise a day. This applies to Toy, Miniature, and Standard Poodles, as long as they’re able to endure a walk of that length.
While you’re out walking, you can even use the time to train your Poodle to respond to cues, as well as build the bond between you two.
Here are the recommended walking times/distance for each type of Poodle:
- Toy: 20-25 minutes, about ½ mile to a mile
- Miniature: 30-40 minutes, between 1-2 miles
- Standard: 40-60 minutes, between 2-3 miles
Keep in mind that puppies, senior dogs, or dogs with underlying health issues may not be able to walk as long or as far as a healthy, adult dog.
You may want to also consider a harness instead of using a collar for these daily walks. Collars can choke or gag your dog because they cut into his throat if he’s pulling on the leash. A harness also gives you more control over the dog’s upper body, which could come in handy when meeting other dogs.
Here’s a harness to consider:
Gooby Dog Harness-Soft mesh Head-in Dog Harness: this is a harness made from breathable mesh, which comes in various sizes and colors. This may not fit a standard Poodle, however. The small harness can fit a dog up to 23 lbs. The fabric in this harness is 100% polyester, which is lightweight and easy to clean. It’s also strong.
Fida Retractable Leash: this leash can go out to 16 ft, and it’s made for dogs from small all the way up to 100lbs. You’ll have more control of your Poodle with a retractable leash like this. The leash even has reflective fabric, to make your dog more visible on those late evening walks. It also features an ergonomic anti-slip soft handle, which is durable and comfortable.
2). Take Your Poodle Swimming!
Poodles are adept swimmers; after all, this is what they were bred to do as water retrievers. Standard Poodles are the best. Swimming makes the dog use up his energy, as he uses all his muscles. It’s also a low-impact activity that won’t strain the dog’s joints and ligaments.
So, when things get warm in the summer, why not take your Poodle to the lake with you?
3). Fetch & Chew Toys
Because Poodles do have a tendency to chew things up, it’s great to give them safe toys meant to be chewed. This helps the dog release tension and stress, as well as stimulating the mind. This is an activity that creates endorphins in the brain, which can ease pain, make the dog happier, and calm.
Here’s a cute one: Crocodile Dog Chew Toy for Aggressive Chewers: this dog chew toy is meant to be durable, even for dogs that are aggressive chewers. The surface is textured and won’t harm your dog’s teeth and gums. And you can even put treats in the crocodile’s mouth. There’s also a built-in squeaker that some dogs will love!
Here’s another chew toy for aggressive chewers: ZMKEUUREKA Dog Toys for Aggressive Chewers (large dogs): this toy is intended for large dogs, such as the Standard Poodle. This tug-o-war chew toy is made from natural rubber, which is hard, flexible, and non-toxic. The shape will make your dog want to play tug-of-war right away! It does say the toy is nearly indestructible. So, if your dog is a really aggressive chewer, this may not be the right toy to give him.
The great thing about these, and other toys, is that they can be used in the backyard, at the dog park, or anywhere there’s plenty of room to play safely! You can throw the toys for a great game of fetch, and later your canine companion can chew to his heart’s content!
4). Other Types of Activities for Poodles
There are other activities your Poodle is sure to love, no matter his size! These dogs excel at competitions such as dog shows, obedience training, tracking scent, agility and obstacle courses, and more.
Another benefit is that you and your Poodle can train together. This is another great way to cement the bond between you. It’s also perfect for learning how to work together. Your Poodle will excel at these and other activities! He loves a challenge, but also loves to spend time with you having fun!
The key is to keep your Poodle’s energy low while stimulating his mind at the same time. Your Poodle needs both in order to be a happy, healthy dog. Then you won’t have to worry about coming home to a mess! No more chewed-up shoes and pillow when your Toy, Miniature, or Standard Poodle gets plenty of exercise.