Routines That Every Dog Needs

Following through with your dogs routine is just as important for their mental health as their physical health: meals, sleep, walks, and playing are key.
Routines That Every Dog Needs

Last update: 26 October, 2018

Dogs are creatures of habit. They quickly get used to routines and doing things at certain times of the day. If these things don’t happen, it can disorientate them and even cause depression. For this and many other reasons, you need to respect your dog’s habits and know the types of routines your dog needs in their life.

Routines dogs need


This is one of the most important routines for a dog. It’s natural for them to act like they are starving, ready to indulge anything and everything in front of them, but it can be easily controlled if you give them routine meals.

First, determine how many times a day your dog will eat. This doesn’t mean that you need to give him three portions of food.  It recommended that they should eat they should eat their daily amount divided several proportions. There are some calmer dogs that are capable of eating just once while other more eager dogs are able to eat three times a day.

Once you’ve decided how many times your dog will eat per day, choose the time of day and always feed them at those times every day. Try to give feed them after you’ve eaten to maintain the order of hierarchy. If your dog is sure that he will eat a specific time, he won’t be so anxious to eat or bother you until you’ve eaten.


Your dog needs routine walks because their biological needs are regulated by their internal clock.

Two french bulldogs on leashes

If you don’t take your dog out for a walk at the same time every day, they could start relieving themselves in the house, even if they don’t want to. They could lose control of their intestinal flora and this could cause future health problems.

Set a time for your dog’s walks and try to do them after eating. You should walk your dog two or three times a day. However, the most important thing is for them to be at the same time every day.


You should mark your dog’s sleeping patterns. Your dog will sleep all day because they need more sleep than humans. However, during the night, you won’t want your dog walking or running around the house.

Dog sleeping in a garage

So, if you have a specific time that you go to bed, the most logical thing would be for your dog to stick to this routine as well. Even if your bedtime is a little unstable, put your dog’s bed in a place where he can sleep peacefully at the same time each night.


Playing is important for cognitive development, but doing it at different times of day can cause behaviour problems. Your dog will have a hard time understanding the differences between serious moments and playtime.

Beagles playing with an interactive toy

Choose a specific time each day for play and stick to it. Play short but intense sessions and make sure that the final one is different so that your dog knows that it’s time to be serious and rest.

Changes to your dog’s routine can throw their emotional and physical state off balance. Of course, your dog’s routine is really important and setting one up isn’t always easy.  It’s hard even for people to stick to their own routine. However, if you make an effort to establish these routines your dog needs, you’ll have a happy and healthy dog and a tighter bond than ever.

Make the effort and try it. You’ll see just how good the outcome will be. As you already knew, having a pet requires responsibilities, but it can still be a pleasant experience. You just need to invest a little time, energy, and patience.


The contents of My Animals are written for informational purposes. They can't replace the diagnosis, advice, or treatment from a professional. In the case of any doubt, it's best to consult a trusted specialist.