Dog parents always want what’s best for their canine companions. However, different kinds of dogs have different needs, especially regarding their energy levels. If your dog is more active than others, it’s necessary to understand their behavior and how to keep them happy and healthy.
What are the Qualities of an Active Dog?
If your dog is inclined toward physical activities like herding, competing in agility or obstacle courses, service jobs, or rescue missions, they fall under the “active dog” category. An active dog possesses high energy, mobility, and agility. They have high activity levels in that they expend more energy than usual and have high rates of metabolism and stamina.
Dogs, in general, need to run daily, but if your pet wants to run more than the average canine and does so in even more considerable distances, they’re definitely an active dog. Active dogs come in all shapes in sizes, but typically larger breeds are most often considered in this category.
Which Breeds Are Active Dogs?
When searching for the right dog breed for you, it’s always important to consider whether or not they’re an active dog, as this will affect your own lifestyle. An active dog essentially needs to have an active caretaker who is willing to meet their needs and high energy levels.
Here are some of the most well-known active dog breeds, should you decide to adopting or purchasing one as a pet:
- Golden Retriever - This popular dog breed is known for their active and obedient nature and talent for fetching items. Golden retrievers were bred to be hunting companions, tasked with retrieving fowl or other game their human hunting partner would take down.
- Siberian Husky - Siberian Huskies are easily recognizable for their wolf-like features and habit of howling. This breed was raised to be the ideal sled dog, hence their strong build and high tolerance to the cold.
- Australian Shepherd - Intelligent and agile, Australian Shepherds were bred for their namesake, to herd sheep and cattle by running circles around them to keep them together and safe from predators.
Essentials of an Active Dog
Diet and Nutrition
Because an active dog burns more calories, releases more energy, and constantly uses their muscles, it is crucial to meet their nutritional needs by providing them with the proper diet on a daily basis. How much protein does an active dog need every day? Which vitamins should I give my dog? Which dog food is best for large breeds? Your vet can provide you with the answers to your questions regarding your dog’s diet and nutritional needs.
Incorporating nutritional supplements into your dog’s daily routine is ideal to ensure your furry friend stays strong and healthy. The essential dietary requirements of an active dog are fat, protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and water.
You can purchase commercial dog food that already has the right amount of nutrients for your dog, either in the form of kibble or wet chunks. You can also create homemade meals for your dog in your kitchen, as long as you research which ingredients are safe for your pet.
Some dogs may require specific supplements that target their age or particular health conditions. For example, consider finding the best dog supplement for joints since active dogs are prone to joint pain or injury due to their rigorous and active lifestyle.
If your dog is a picky eater, you can include food toppers in your dog’s meals to enhance its flavor and texture. Some examples of healthy food toppers for dogs that you can easily buy at the supermarket are blueberries, cucumbers, yogurt, peanut butter, and even nutritional dog treats.
It is also important to practice proper feeding to prevent health problems such as obesity or gastrointestinal issues. Watch out for overfeeding, avoid meals before or after strenuous activities, and don't make abrupt dietary changes.
We all know that exercise for dogs is the best way to release their pent-up energy, so it’s essential to incorporate enough activities in your dog’s daily routine, consisting of both physical activity and play. Remember that different dogs have different exercise needs, so take note of how much exercise your pet needs daily.
The best exercise for dogs is walking. Simply provide your dog with a high-quality leash and take your pet on a stroll in your neighborhood or at a nearby pet park. Active dogs usually enjoy a walk about 30 to 60 minutes long, often twice a day, depending on the dog. Walking provides the exercise your dog needs and allows them to explore the world and interact with other walking animals under your supervision.
Exercise can also come in the form of fun activities and games. For example, dogs love a good game of fetch, hide-and-seek, or tug of war. Investing in indoor toys for dogs is also a good idea for pet parents who prefer their dogs to exercise inside the comfort of their homes.
In addition to satisfying your dog’s high energy levels, exercising with your dog is also an excellent way for you to bond with them.
While physical activity is vital for an active dog, mental exercise is also necessary for their overall performance and health. Mental stimulation can reduce hyperactivity, improve their mood, reduce boredom and destructive behavior, and teach good habits.
Dogs can be mentally stimulated through social interactions, tricks, and exploring different environments. We recommend taking your dog to a dog park, trying obedience training through basic commands like “sit” and “roll over,” and bringing them to new places like the beach or a hiking trail.
Exercising the brain is just as important as exercising the body, so make sure to provide the proper mental stimulation for your furry friend to keep them sharp.
Overall, Healthy is Happy!
In general, dogs are active creatures that require a lot of love and attention to thrive. The more we care for our dogs, the more we want to ensure they’re healthy. After all, a healthy dog is a happy dog.
By providing them with the appropriate diet, exercise, and mental stimulation, you’re helping your dog reach its fullest furry potential.
For more information on how to keep your active dog healthy, visit our blog today.