Sunday, August 8, 2010

Exercising a Miniature Schnauzer (or any other breeds)

We came across this rather cute article on how much exercise a typical Miniature Schnauzer really needs. But we believe this really goes for ALL breeds... even the tiny ones as well.

Before we get onto the article, we'll let you have an insight of our current daily exercise routine.

Mom drives us out on weekdays at 6am to our usual favorite secluded hide-out for our 4.4km jog&walk session lasting about 45mins to 1hr. After which we'll drive to another location to feed the usual mongrels aka stray dogs with table scrapes from Mom & Dad's food-stall. So all in all, the entire session to & from home will take about 2hrs.

Altho' our exercise is fixed on every weekdays (5 days a week), Mom also makes an effort to give us a fast-walk of 4.4km on weekends around the estate (for a change of environment). So all in all, we'll usually clock up a minimum (jog&walk) distance of 22km (in 5 days), maximum of 30.8km (in 7 days) per week. Pretty somethin' for a small breed like me weighin' only 5.4kg eh?

Wondering about the exact distance? That's cuz Mom uses an iPhone GPS app to monitor the distance & time we take.

Mom is a firm-believer of exercising dogs (aside from a natural raw organic diet for us) for good health. Dogs without any exercise remain lethargic... & just like humans without any exercise at all... will do them no good in the long run.

For most dogs, its to the local dog-run for them to chase, play & mingle with other dogs. But Mom doesn't like the idea of us there as the chance of contracting ticks (or any other diseases from other dogs) is very high compared to our regular secluded hide-out. We do meet our usual pawpals there daily too (as well as other new pawpals around our estate)... so there's definitely interaction involved with our species.

But for me, Velvet, I do not play with other dogs at all as I'm an Alpha Female. So there really isn't any point in going to the dog-run for me (I'll only end up sniffin' the entire grass-area there the whole time).

So have you brought your pawpal(s) out for a gd ol' long walk already?

"Regular exercise is essential for optimal health. Sustained, vigorous use of the muscles stimulates all tissues & increases circulation. Blood vessels dilate & blood pressure rises. As a result, tissues become oxygenated, which helps to clean the cells of toxins. Digestive glands secrete their fluids better & the bowels move more easily. Nearly all dogs benefit from half an hour or more of daily vigorous exercise." Holistic Vet Dr. Pitcairn

Mom also believes that since humans detox via perspiration (via exercise), the same logic would apply for dogs as well. Since we do not have sweat glands on our bodies, we perspire 99% via panting, 1% via our pawpads. So detox is really a major combination of both exercise & (natural raw) diet.


And here's the article for all! (or simply read below)

The subject of Miniature Schnauzer exercise provokes a wide response. Speak to 10 different owners and you'll get 10 different answers as to how much exercise their Mini needs.

One reason for the growing popularity of the breed is indeed their versatility. As far as exercising a Miniature Schnauzer goes, these small dogs can adapt to living in a small home in the suburbs, an apartment in the city or a log cabin in the middle of nowhere.

This dog breed is suitable for older people, single people living alone or as a pet for the whole family..

However, being an excellent companion dog to people doesn't mean that the Mini Schnauzer has no needs of his own - he DOES!

Regular Exercise

One thing all dogs - including Miniature Schnauzers - have in common is that they do need daily exercise – preferably regular walks. At the very least they need a garden or yard to run around in.

Regular exercise keeps your dog's heart pumping, blood flowing, muscles working and joints functioning.

Exercise helps to keep your dog healthy and free from disease and illness.

Whether you live in a condo or on a farm, it’s a good idea to start regular exercise patterns early so the dog gets used to his daily routine and apapts to a constant amount of exercise.

Before we got our puppy Max, we read that as far as Miniature Schnauzer exercise goes, these dogs are easy to please They are as happy running round the garden as going for a five-mile hike.

That is largely - although not entirely - true. Max is definitely happier going for a 5 or even 10-mile hike than staying in the garden!

However, this is partly because he has been used to a lot of daily exercise since being a pup. Establishing regular Miniature Schnauzer exercise routines early is a good idea.

If you have a busy life and can only take the dog out once or maybe twice a day, get into the routine early on. This will help your dog's body and mind to adjust to your lifestyle.

How Much?

Veterinarians advise that you take your Mini out for at least one decent walk every day - and 2 or 3 times daily is even better. At least 30 minutes a day is the minimum recommended Miniature Schnauzer exercise.

You shouldn't think about getting one if you cannot commit to at least one daily walk with your Mini.

Like humans, dogs' energy levels do vary and a dog with lots of energy will need longer than half an hour. Mini Schnauzers are not slothful by nature, they are similar to terriers and enjoy running around given half a chance.

Max gets about 90 minutes a day spread over 3 walks. We've taken him on 6-hour hikes in the hills and he's still running energetically at the end of the day. (Although, once back home he sleeps and snores all evening and night. I think this is where the expression "dog tired" comes from!)

The Mini Schnauzer loves playing games. Their compact bodies lend themselves to a short stride and small turning circle. This is helping the breed gain success in agility classes in both the USA and UK.

Throwing a ball or a toy is a good way of burning off your dog’s excess energy. Although if he’s anything like Max, you’ll get more exercise than the dog! I usually have to fetch the ball myself when Max drops it and goes off to sniff something more interesting found along the way.

In a dog's mind, nothing can beat going for a walk. Whether to a new place with new smells or revisiting regular haunts - just see how excited he gets when you get out the lead already.

Look on the bright side, a brisk walk is a great way of keeping both you and your dog fit...!

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