All dogs, big or small, need to exercise. Dogs where born to work! They hunted for food, protected their puppies, defended their territory and played with each other. They had a purpose!
For thousands of years most domestic dogs had a purpose, they hunted with us, help heard our livestock and even protected us! Dogs today have their food handed to them in a bowl, and a lot of them (including mine), spend part of their day in a crate, waiting for us to come home to play with them. Like humans, dogs that do not get enough exercise may become overweight, which leads to health problems and expense vet bills. Without exercise dogs can also get bored which could lead to a whole slew of behavior problems, such as:
- Constant barking & winning
- Digging in the yard
- Rough play with you or your children
- Garbage digging
- Chewing on furniture, baseboards & cabinets
- Soiling in the house
- Guarding toys, food or even you
- Difficult to train and stay focused on you
- Bad manners and more
So those are only some of the negatives for not giving your dog enough exercise. I know you are saying to yourself, well I let my dog out into my fenced in back yard to play. If your dogs are anything like mine, they will just go out and do their business, smell around for a couple of minutes and come right back to the door looking for me. Face it, our dogs really just want to be with us! So, we have to physically & mental engage our dogs in order for them to really be happy and actually get tired. Now all dogs do not need the same amount of exercise, it all depends on the breed, size, demeanor and age of your dog. The moral of the story is a well exercised dog is a tired dog is a happy dog and therefore a happy owner!!