Last Updated on July 4, 2023
Australian Shepherds are very active dogs bred to work hard all day long. If you are not using your Australian Shepherd for herding, you’ll need to be willing to give them lots of exercise for Australian Shepherd daily.
According to The Kennel Club, exercise for Australian Shepherds requires between 1-2 hours daily.
Remember that this amount of exercise for Australian Shepherd is recommended for a healthy adult dog. Puppies and senior dogs will require different amounts of exercise and activities to stay healthy. Australian Shepherds are considered geriatric or senior dogs around the age of 7. You will still need to keep them active, but the amount of exercise for Australian Shepherds will decrease at this age.
When owners fail to provide their Australian Shepherd with the proper physical and mental stimulation, they get restless and agitated. This quickly leads to destructive behaviour that is difficult to handle.
There are several ways to keep your Australian Shepherd active.
Daily walks are an excellent way to exercise for Australian Shepherds. Not only does it provide physical activity, but the sights will also mentally stimulate your dog, smells and sounds along the way. Ideally, daily walks should be at least between 45 minutes to an hour. You can break this up into multiple walks if that is easier for your schedule.
Try to take your walks simultaneously each day, if possible. Off-leash walking is ideal if you have a safe area to do this and your dog has good recall training. This allows your Australian Shepherd to run, turn, jump and play. All dogs appreciate routine, and your dog will start to look forward to the daily walk.
Other Ideas to Improve Exercise for Australian Shepherd
Australian Shepherds are very intelligent, so incorporating fun activities will help stimulate them mentally. Look for activities that burn lots of energy in short periods and use those mental skills. Australian Shepherds thrive in high-intensity games and strength training activities as a herding dogs.
Many Australian Shepherds love herding balls. They are designed for herding dogs and cater to their natural herding instinct and let them burn off energy. Herding breeds are bred to chase and control moving objects (sheep, cattle and other livestock). These herding balls give your Australian Shepherd something to chase and control. This will reduce their desire to herd things they aren’t supposed to.
Frisbee requires more skill, coordination, and timing than catching a ball. If your dog has not played with a frisbee before, slowly introduce the concept, and you’ll be surprised how quickly they advance. You’ll want to start by rolling the frisbee on the ground and letting them grab it, then progress to low throws, building to higher and other throws. This is a fantastic energy burner for your dog and great if you feel a bit low on energy.
Set up a simple obstacle course in the backyard. Include physical and mental obstacles for your Australian Shepherd. Some dogs enjoy agility and can be pretty skilled with practice.
Lack of exercise for Australian Shepherd dogs can cause them to turn to destructive behaviour or cause weight gain issues, so all owners must pay attention to their dog’s amount of exercise.