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Dog walk frequency and duration: Analysis of a cohort of dogs up to 15 months of age

By Rachel H. Kinsman, Kate E. Main, Rachel A. Casey, Rosa E. P. Da Costa, Sara C. Owczarczak-Garstecka, Toby G. Knowles, Séverine Tasker, Jane K. Murray

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Abstract

Regular exercise for dogs has health and welfare benefits. This study sought to address a gap in existing research regarding what constitutes ‘common’ age-specific walking practices by owners of young dogs, and how these practices change as the dogs reach adulthood. Dog owners living in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland participating in a longitudinal study reported the frequency and duration of their average weekday and average weekend walks when their dogs were aged 16 weeks (n = 2225), 9 months (n = 1200) and 15 months (n = 808). Owners also reported the amount of time their dogs spent on lead during these walks. For the statistical analysis, a subpopulation of dogs with data regarding walking practices at all three timepoints were used (n = 609). At all three timepoints dogs were most commonly walked twice a day. Commonly, 16-week-old puppies were walked for a total of 30 min on weekdays and weekend days, whereas dogs aged 9 and 15 months were walked for a total of 1 h on weekdays and 2 h on weekend days. Commonly, 16-week-old puppies spent ≥75% of total walk time on lead, whereas the older dogs mostly spent

Publication Title Applied Animal Behaviour Science
Volume 250
Pages 105609
ISBN/ISSN 0168-1591
DOI 10.1016/j.applanim.2022.105609
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Tags
  1. Dogs
  2. Exercise
  3. Longitudinal studies
  4. Walking