Exercising your Portuguese Water Dog
Any Portuguese Water Dog puppy is going to be very active and needs mental and physical exercise to keep them stimulated and happy. By far, the easiest way we have learned how to exercise the Portuguese Water Dog is to teach it to retrieve, as they have a natural retrieving instinct. We prefer to use a tennis ball for retrieving, as sticks and other potentially sharp objects may injure the inside of your dog’s mouth during play. However, some owners fall into the trap of over exercising their pups, which can result in exhaustion and even lead to injury and long-term damage to their physical health.
It’s very important to not exercise your Portuguese Water Dog between the hours of 8am and 6pm from mid-Spring to mid-Autumn as overexertion in these hotter months can be fatal. Remember that dogs can’t sweat and cool themselves down like humans do, and are quick to overheat, especially in the harsh Australian summer. Puppies need to between 16-18 hours of sleep per day, in order to remain happy and healthy, so whilst it’s important to make sure they get their exercise, they equally need to get enough rest, and are typically at their least active during the middle of the day.
As a puppy they only require approximately 10-15 minutes of exercise a day to be sufficiently stimulated, and excessive play can lead to them becoming overstimulated and eventually sick. So please be conservative with your pup, and remember that more isn’t always best, and dogs need to work their way up to prolonged exercise, and aren’t suited to long walks or vigorous exercise until they’re at least 18 months old. We highly encourage you to teach your dog to go swimming and enjoy the water, however never just throw them in the deep end, instead slowly introduce them to the water and let them decide how much they want to go in.
In summary, exercising your Portuguese Water Dog is important and critical to their development, however it’s important to allow them plenty of time to sleep and recover. Always use your common sense when it comes to your puppy, however if you’re even in doubt never hesitate to contact us, so we can make sure you and your new family member can live your best lives.