A German Shepherd is really strong and active that they can’t contain their energy. They must have something to do such as any form of exercise.
Walking is one of the exercises that a German Shepherd can do and enjoy. So, how many miles should a German Shepherd walk?
An adult German Shepherd can walk for 5 to 10 or 8 to 16 kilometers per day. It will take them about 90 to 120 minutes.
Whereby, walking and exercising for German Shepherd puppies should not exceed 5 minutes per month of age.
How far should I walk my German Shepherd?
German Shepherds are strong and fall under the category of being “working dogs”.
To develop their strength, you have to exercise them daily with exercises such as walking and running.
To avoid your dog getting tired, you got to split your dog’s walking time into two or three smaller periods such as morning, noon, and at night.
But how far can a German Shepherd walk? Your German Shepherd is really active and is really strong so they can actually walk a distance of 5 to 10 miles a day for about 90 to 120 minutes.
Walking your dog daily ensures that they release all the energy that they have, stay healthy and fit, and relieve boredom and destructive behavior.
How far should you walk your German Shepherd puppy?
There is a common misconception that you have to exercise your dog for a long time in all different ages.
This isn’t true as your German Shepherd puppy can’t keep up with long walks or a run.
That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t exercise your puppy rather focus on shorter duration and low intensity. It’s best to not keep your dog indoors all the time because they also need exercise.
However, their exercise differs from that of an adult German Shepherd in which you only need to give them 5 minutes of walking per month of age.
Harmful effects of your German Shepherd puppy walking a long distance
Even though German Shepherds do grow quickly at a fast pace, they are quite weak at the beginning.
Giving your puppy strenuous exercise will actually cause their delicate organs and bone structure damage.
A German Shepherd puppy needs time to grow so their bodies can be supported and their joints and ligaments aren’t harmed.
They can; however, walk but not for a very long distance.
So, the best option is to let your German Shepherd puppy move at their own pace without rushing them to do walk more and to give them walk them 5 minutes for every month of age.
Is it alright to walk your German Shepherd during winter?
Walking an adult German Shepherd
Walking an adult German Shepherd is really different from walking a German Shepherd in the summer.
You need to be sure that they aren’t sick, old, without an undercoat, or malnourished so they can withstand the cold.
Check Can German Shepherds Stay Outside in The Cold? to know more about tips that help your German Shepherd stay in the cold and much more other important information.
If you want to walk your German Shepherd, you can walk them; however, you need to not stay for longer periods of time so your dog doesn’t get frostbite or hypothermia.
Dogs can also lose their smelling scent so it’s best to never take your dog leash out or let them run in front of you.
Also, feed them a high-quality protein-rich diet so that your dog can better stay warm.
Walking a puppy German Shepherd
Walking your German Shepherd puppy in the cold isn’t a good idea because your German Shepherd puppy doesn’t grow their body hair quickly so they won’t be able to tolerate the cold.
The best option for a German Shepherd puppy is to not walk in the cold especially at freezing temperatures. Instead, you can keep them indoors and play with them as a form of exercise.
Is it alright to walk your German Shepherd during the summer?
Walking your dog in the summer can cause them problems such as heatstroke and dehydration.
It’s important to keep both your German Shepherd whether an adult or a puppy dehydrated by providing them with the water that they need.
You can walk an adult German Shepherd and puppy in the summer but you have to walk them depending on their age based on specific timings.
There are several steps that you have to do to keep your German Shepherd safe during summer.
You need to test the ground when you German Shepherd is walking on the asphalt so that they don’t feel hot and hurt their paws.
You can either walk your dog in a shady area or walk your dog in times where there is no sun such as at night or early in the morning.
Another alternative is to walk your dog in the grass such as in the park.
How to train a German Shepherd to walk beside you?
The harness training method
Step one: Eliminate distractions
Start your dog’s training in a quiet place such as your house or yard so they can concentrate on what you are going to teach them.
Step two: Attach the harness on your dog
You can then put the harness in your dog and attach the leash to it. If your dog isn’t comfortable with having a harness around them, you can give them time to relax when they have the harness.
Just let them wear the harness for the next several days without attaching the leash yet.
Step three: Walk with your dog
Once they are ready, walk with them a short distance while keeping the leash short at all times.
Step four: Teach your dog the “stop” command
Give your dog the command “stand” or “heel” so they can stop when you ask them to.
Step five: Reward
As soon as your dog stops, give them treats so they know that they have done a good job and positively associate the experience.
Step six: Repeat
Repeat these steps while gradually increasing the distance when they are walking beside you.
The leash training method
Step one: Start by walking your dog
Attach a leash to your dog’s collar and walk with them.
Step two: Position your dog to either the left or right
Position your dog to either side so you don’t stumble and fall and your dog safely walks.
Step three: Stand still as your dog pulls you
Start out slowly walking your dog beside you. However, when they start to pull, you have to stand still without taking any step forward or backward.
Your dog will stop when they find that you stopped. When they come back to you, reward them with a treat that will make them happy.
Step four: Repeat and give treats
When your dog pulls you away, you have to repeat step number three so that they can walk beside you.
If your dog is walking beside you without pulling you back, you can then give them treats for doing a good job
Tips for walking a German Shepherd
1.) Use a perfect size leash
The size of the leash affects your dog’s walk with you. Don’t buy a long leash as it will cause your dog to pull you and you won’t be able to make them walk beside you.
It is best that you get a dog leash that is shorter but not tighter. A tight leash can harm your dog by suffocating them.
The benefits of a shorter leash are that it controls your dog’s movement and prevents them from going in every direction.
2.) Use positive reinforcement
Always have dog treats with you so your dog can understand when they have done an acceptable behavior, in this case, not pulling the leash.
Repeat with your dog this activity so they get used to walking smoothly beside you.
3.) Don’t move when your dog is pulling the leash
If your dog pulls you in all different directions, you have to stop moving immediately.
Your dog will be confused and look at you while stopping to see what to do next. They will see you as a leader.
If your German Shepherd continues to pull you, move in the opposite direction to signal your dog that this isn’t the direction that you are going to walk in.
1.) How far can a 3 month German Shepherd walk?
Any German Shepherd puppy can walk 5 minutes per month of age. For example, if a puppy is 3 months old, they can walk for 15 minutes.
It’s important to not overstrain your German Shepherd puppy so they don’t get really tired and injure themselves.
2.) How to prevent your dog from pulling the leash?
You can prevent your dog from pulling the leash by starting at a really young age where you train them on important cues so they know when they need to stop pulling and when they can walk again.
Always positively reinforce the behavior so giving them treats when they are walking beside you. Never continue walking while your dog is pulling you because they will understand that it is normal for them to keep pulling you.
A German Shepherd needs daily exercise whether they are an adult or a puppy.
Walking is a really good exercise for German Shepherds especially those with high energy levels; they can walk for long-distance.
However, you got to not overdo it so your German Shepherd doesn’t get overstrained from the exercise.
Being moderate in walking your German Shepherd whether they are adults or puppies helps German Shepherd stay fit and avoid them getting tired.
To know more about the reasons that German Shepherds pace, check Why do German Shepherds Pace and Is it Something to Worry About?