Did you know that most dog walkers walk their dogs for around 300 minutes per week on average? Yes, it’s true; most owners indeed walk a lot more each week than people without a dog. But, depending on the breed, 300 minutes each week may be too little or too much.
Plus, you have to factor in the timing of each exercise, the type of exercise, and the exercise frequency to seem healthy and beneficial for a dog. This is especially relevant with the Poodle.
When you have a Poodles, exercise is not a one size fits all formula as there are three types the Standard, Toy, and Miniature.
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For example, suppose you have a Miniature Toy Poodle doing the same amount of exercise as a Standard. In that case, they could severely exhaust themselves or put themselves at risk of injury.
Whereas if you have a Standard doing the same exercise intensity as a Miniature, it may be undertrained and quickly gain weight.
These are just a few reasons why it’s essential to know how much exercise is relevant and the type of exercise is best suited for your breed as a Poodle owner. To learn more about a Poodles exercise reads, keep on reading as I’m going to cover everything you need to know in this article today.
What Will I Learn? 👇
There’s rarely a reason why a Poodle should not do exercise regardless of their type, age, gender, size, or ability. One of the main reasons why daily exercise is so essential to a Poodle is to help control their behavior and provide them with enough stimulation.
First of all, the Poodle is one of the world’s most intelligent breeds! After all, they are a waterdog and used to be kept for hunting birds primarily. Their intelligent nature made them an easy breed to train and discipline when retrieving. However, even though they’re domesticated today, their athletic ability and intelligence must be stimulated each day as they could engage in boredom behaviors.
If you’re not familiar with boredom behaviors, they’re basically self-destructive activities like chewing and licking your furniture in your home. Trust me; this can be quite a nuisance if you’ve bought an expensive piece of furniture and a Poodle has destroyed it. Therefore exercising them can save you a lot of money-saving you from refurbishing or purchasing new items.
Frequent daily exercise reduces the risk of a Poodle becoming obese, and it lowers their chance of having a life-threatening disease like cancer, diabetes, hypertension, stroke, pancreatitis, and more. Because of this, it can save you expensive vet bills from treating such conditions.
The more you take your Poodle outdoors for exercise, the more likely they will gain confidence exploring different environments outside of their home. In addition to this, they will come into contact with people, vehicles, and other animals, allowing them to become socialized slowly. As a result, they’re less likely to develop anxiety and be more comfortable around strangers and unfamiliar surroundings.
Regular exercise can help a Poodle stay limber as it encourages fluid in their joints, making them move easily and become less stiff. Because of this, it can also slow down the development of arthritis and stop them from experiencing bone deformities. In addition to this, exercise can also help Poodles mentally as it releases endorphins just like humans do.
If you exercise a Poodle frequently, it can stop them from being constipated and allow them to go to the bathroom more when they feel like it. Because of this, they’re more likely to get rid of unhealthy bacteria and are less likely to have bladder infections.
While some dogs tend to love a variety of exercises, there are three main things you should keep in mind when exercising a Poodle:
You don’t want to exercise a Poodle and put a great strain on its joints. In fact, you should keep the exercise at a low impact to prevent any unnecessary stress on their body. If you take them out for intense exercise day after day, i.e., running, you could increase their risk of injury and overtax their muscles. With that in mind, you should try to aim for low-impact walks and only vary their exercise once in a while.
Swimming is actually a very low-impact sport, so ideal for joint health.
While quick bouts of energy-filled activity like playing fetch do have their place, for daily exercise, walking your Poodle is the way to go. This holds true for tiny toy Poodles, medium-sized Minis, and large Standards.
When you have got the hang of exercising your Poodle, and you think they feel comfortable enough for walking for a specific time or pace, you can slowly increase their exercise. Therefore you can slowly exercise for longer at a slightly higher intensity. On the contrary, if they are too tired, you can make the exercise shorter or less intense.
Moreover, when the weather is bad outside, you could focus on exercising your Poodle indoors by playing games of fetch. Similarly, you could hide treats around your home for your Poodle to find and exercise while doing so.
Regarding the type of Poodle you have, you can influence the type of exercise they can do. For instance, they can easily walk, run, and swim as they’re big. Whereas if it’s a Miniature or toy, they may have less stamina to swim or run, so walking is good.
Most of the time, Poodles, when fully grown, will require around 60 minutes minimum of exercise each day. But based on their type, they won’t be able to undergo a full 60 minutes at a time; instead, you will need to break their exercise up into three 20 minute or two 30 minute sessions across the day.
To give you a better idea, check out the following exercise requirements for each type of Poodle:
On average, a Standard Poodle should have around 60-90 minutes of exercise each day when they’re fully grown. It would be best if you aimed to cover a distance of 2-3 miles each day.
Don’t be deceived by a Miniature Poodles size; they’re also a highly energetic Poodle. On average, they should undergo 60 minutes of exercise a day, split across two 30 minute sessions.
Toy Poodles are a lot smaller than the other two types of Poodle and therefore are the only Poodle that requires less than 60 minutes of exercise a day. On average, they should have 30-45 minutes a day to keep them in shape. Part of the reason for this is that they don’t have as much energy or stamina as the Standard and Miniature does.
When looking to get a Poodle, you must know how much exercise they should have according to their age; you should use the following as a guideline.
For Miniatures and Toys under 1-year-old and Standards below 18 months, you should be careful about when you exercise puppies and how much for. Part of the reason for this is that their bones are still developing and maturing. Therefore if you’re not careful, too much exercise can trigger injuries to their soft bone tissues and prevent normal bone growth from happening.
Therefore try and aim for 5 minutes of exercise according to every month they age, after each month passes add 5 minutes more till they’re a grown adult. In addition to their duration, you will want to have the right balance of exercise so you can mix it up between playing inside and becoming familiar with the outside world on light-paced walks. Most importantly, you should leave your puppy to rest when it’s tired, as you shouldn’t put extra stress on their body and raise their heartbeat.
An adult Poodle is when a Toy and Miniature Poodle has reached 12 months, and Standard Poodle is 18 months. All adults should have on average 60 minutes of exercise a day split up into different intervals at these ages.
It would be best if you always exercised a senior Poodle and never assume they don’t require exercise unless they have serious health conditions that limit them from doing so.
Just because a Poodle is elderly, they should not be left alone to rest around their house.
You must take them out for daily light yet regular exercise to stretch their legs and help ease up joint discomfort. Doing this split across 60 minutes will help them maintain muscle mass and alleviate symptoms of chronic conditions like osteoarthritis.
It would help if you aimed to exercise your Poodle based on the guidelines mentioned above as a rule of thumb. When exercising them, though, you should always observe their behavior to look out for signs of fatigue such as:
- Lying down mid exercise
- Losing interest
- Panting easily
- Getting distracted easily
- Loses self-control
If you see them doing this, stop exercising and give them rest. Similarly, you should consider the weather as you don’t want them to suffer from heat exhaustion or become ill from the cold. To give you a better idea, you might want to speak to a vet who can inform you of the right amount of exercise for your Poodle based on their age, weight, and health.
- Poodles were common dogs used by circus performers in France. Therefore this is a breed that commonly exceeds in agility-based exercises even at dog events!
- They’re also great at swimming as their fur, when cut short around their hindquarters, can make them streamline in the water!
Overall, Poodles are a breed that needs daily mental and physical stimulation. Depending on the type of Poodle you have, they will need around 45-90 minutes of exercise a day, once fully grown and split across intervals. In addition to physical exercise, they should also be mentally stimulated to prevent boredom behaviors.
Some good ways of doing this are by giving them puzzles, hiding their treats, and more. Most importantly, exercise can help keep them limber, prevent obesity and reduce the risk of certain diseases. Do you own a Poodle? Let us know their favorite activity in the comments below.
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Marko is the founder and author at PoodleHQ, where he blends profound expertise with formal training in Animal Behavior and Canine Genetics. With multiple generations of poodles under his care, he’s a breed connoisseur, honored with the Canine Care Excellence Award and lauded by the International Pet Enthusiasts Association.