Daily Walks: 5 Reasons to Maintain this Routine

Most dogs need daily walks, although very active dogs may require even more. The length and rhythm of walks will depend on each animal's breed, physical condition, and age.
Daily Walks: 5 Reasons to Maintain this Routine
Luz Eduviges Thomas-Romero

Written and verified by biochemistry Luz Eduviges Thomas-Romero.

Last update: 27 December, 2022

In general, we accept the fact that pets have a beneficial effect on the health of their guardians. Also, experts have long pointed out the benefits of daily walks with dogs as part of the benefit that this coexistence offers to humans.

Regular exercise with your pet is good for both you and your dog’s health and can be a lot of fun. There’s nothing like having an exercise buddy waiting by the door with an enthusiastic wagging tail! Today we’ll talk about your dog’s daily walks and why they’re such a crucial part of your routine.

1. Daily walks are great exercise

Without a doubt, walking your dog every day is an excellent way to keep the animal active and in good physical condition. Today, experts recognize that daily walking helps preserve canine muscles and joints.

It’s worth highlighting the importance of keeping dogs at a healthy weight. In the case of excess weight, walking is an excellent way to help your dog lose those extra pounds. This intervention will reduce your pet’s risk of suffering from chronic conditions such as hypertension, liver disease, and diabetes.

Taking a daily walk is one of the easiest ways to keep your dog in good shape.

A woman walking her dog in the snow.

2. For dogs, walking is also a mental exercise

Seen in detail, daily walks give dogs a chance to explore the neighborhood. In canine physiology, dogs explore the environment with their sense of smell. For this reason, it’s important that you don’t forget to give your pet the opportunity to explore.

It’s worth mentioning that the sense of smell is the primary sense in dogs, and requires a lot of stimulation. In fact, a large part of the canine brain is dedicated to processing odors. Without a doubt, the simplest thing we can do to enrich a dog’s life is to give it time to smell things on walks.

Of course, if these “sniffing breaks” occur without a leash, it’s important that dogs obey commands to get back on track. Also, to keep the fun going, you should change the route from time to time.

Regular aerobic activity during daily walks can improve canine mood and energy levels.

3. It’s an activity that will help you with socialization

Although it may seem trivial to us, to a shy dog or puppy daily walks mean exposure to different people, dogs, and situations.

It’s important to keep in mind that social skills are reinforced throughout the dog’s life with each new person and situation. In this case, it’s also pertinent to introduce small changes in your daily route, to enrich the social experience.

4. The practice of a daily walk reinforces your dog’s confidence

Another reason to walk your dog every day is that it’s an excellent confidence booster. According to the opinion of experts, routines provide animals with structure and stability. This continuity reassures them that their primary needs (food, water, and shelter) will be available whenever they need them.

In addition, having routine activities such as daily walks and interactive play greatly contributes to confidence, especially in shy or fearful dogs. Thus, walking is one of the best ways to keep your dog happy and safe.

It’s important to point out that a dog that feels its needs are satisfied is less likely to go into survival mode. That is, it won’t be eager to go through the trash, eat cat food, or amuse itself by chewing on your shoes.

Dogs walking on treadmills.

5. Daily walks strengthen the bond between dogs and their owners

Another reason to stick to the practice of daily walking is that it strengthens the bond you have with your dog. This activity is very rewarding for the dogs and, therefore, boosts the animal’s attachment and loyalty to their guardian.

To summarize, in the case of healthy dogs, walking is a relatively easy activity to put into practice. What’s more, it provides great benefits to your dog’s life. Don’t forget, in the case of dogs suffering from conditions such as osteoarthritis, you should always discuss the activity plan with your veterinarian.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Westgarth, C., Christian, H. E., & Christley, R. M. (2015). Factors associated with daily walking of dogs. BMC veterinary research, 11(1), 116.
  • Hoerster, K. D., Mayer, J. A., Sallis, J. F., Pizzi, N., Talley, S., Pichon, L. C., & Butler, D. A. (2011). Dog walking: Its association with physical activity guideline adherence and its correlates. Preventive medicine, 52(1), 33-38.
  • Robertson, I. D. (2003). The association of exercise, diet and other factors with owner-perceived obesity in privately owned dogs from metropolitan Perth, WA. Preventive veterinary medicine, 58(1-2), 75-83.
  • Slater, M. R., Robinson, L. E., Zoran, D. L., Wallace, K. A., & Scarlett, J. M. (1995). Diet and exercise patterns in pet dogs. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 207(2), 186-190. https://europepmc.org/article/med/7601712
  • Degeling, C., & Rock, M. (2013). ‘It was not just a walking experience’: reflections on the role of care in dog-walking. Health Promotion International, 28(3), 397-406.
  • Westgarth, C., Christley, R. M., Pinchbeck, G. L., Gaskell, R. M., Dawson, S., & Bradshaw, J. W. (2010). Dog behaviour on walks and the effect of use of the leash. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 125(1-2), 38-46.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.