Shih Tzu Exercise Needs

Shih Tzu trotting on the grass in the yard
A man and woman walking their Shih Tzu in the park
Shih Tzu exercise needs: Hour walks are a great way to expel pent-up energy

Shih Tzu exercise needs should always be obeyed. Just like people, they require regular physical activity to stay healthy and live a long life. It is essential to encourage your Shih Tzu to exercise daily, which is a good way for both you and your canine to keep healthy and in shape.

Shih Tzu exercise needs: PETSITE Dog Treadmill

Older Shih Tzus predominantly suffer from obesity that puts them at significant risk for heart-related issues. Gentle, consistent exercise is perfect for an older dog that is mostly less prone to exercise on its own.

Owners need to supervise their Shih Tzu exercise requirements. Too many owners put their Shih Tzu outside two or three times a day without any supervision. Many Shih Tzu dogs, especially if they are no other dogs in the home, go outside and find a nice, shaded area and relax, which does not provide one iota of exercise. On the other hand, some Shih Tzu will walk around and explore the yard; however, this is also not an appropriate Shih Tzu exercise level.

Shih Tzu Exercise Needs: How Long Should You Walk a Shih Tzu

Consider starting a Shih Tzu puppy walking program. Start with an easy walk at a brisk pace for a certain distance or time. When this becomes easy for you and your dog, increase the length and time in reasonable interludes. In no time, you and your Shih Tzu are going to be in the best shape possible.

Shih Tzu running happily and freely in the park
Shih Tzu exercise needs: A nice romp in the park is beneficial

Remember that there are other fun activities for you and your Shih Tzu to do together, such as frisbee, fetch, playing with the kids, swimming, and hiking. These activities will ensure that your dog stays trim and healthy. Keeping these variations of activities ensures that you and your dog do not get bored.

However, there are some activities that your Shih Tzu will need to avoid. For instance, do not ride your bicycle, skateboard, rollerblades, or motorized vehicle when walking your dog. These are forms of exercises that are not recommended for a Shih Tzu and can cause heatstroke, stress, and exhaustion. Also, do your best to consistently exercise your Shih Tzu during the coolest times of the day to avoid heat-related problems.

How Much Exercise Does a Shih Tzu Need?

Shih Tzu exercise needs: Lack of activity could cause behavioral problems

Shih Tzu exercise needs are not as hefty as some of the larger breeds. However, do not take too lightly the need for or neglect putting your dog through some form of physical activity. Thankfully, most of the exercise requirements can be accomplished by playing fetch inside your home with your Shih Tzu’s favorite toy, but your Shih Tzu will still require daily walks.

Walking your dog is a great opportunity for owner and pup to form a greater bond. A good long walk with your canine family member is also a great way to let them experience the world and different smells and stimulation, helping to cut down on behavioral problems.

All Shih Tzu owners should adopt a daily exercise regimen to ensure that their dog’s physical and mental health remains in top form. Some Shih Tzus can suffer problems due to fast growth and development, which can cause joint and muscle problems. Therefore, your Shih Tzu exercise level and the activities they take part in can vary throughout the dog’s life.

How Long Should I Walk My Shih Tzu?

Cute Shih Tzu with his ball waiting to play fetch
Shih Tzu exercise needs

All dog owners should understand that a well-behaved dog is a tired one. You can keep your Shih Tzu well-exercised by investing at least one hour of activity daily and 3 to 5 days per week. Daily walks for an hour are an excellent way for your dog to get rid of any pent-up energy. Although the Shih Tzu is a toy breed member, if they do not get rid of excess energy productively, they are known to cause an amazing amount of damage to a yard or home.

Sometimes, a simple run at leisure in an enclosed area at a dog park is all your puppy needs. If your Shih Tzu refuses to walk, swimming is also recommended. It is a great form of exercise because it is easy on the dog’s joints and muscles. However, this form of activity needs to be closely monitored to prevent accidental drowning.

Shih Tzu running happy in the grass
Shih Tzu exercise needs

You can also keep your Shih Tzu occupied by getting into activities such as agility course training. Running through an agility course is physically and mentally challenging for a dog. The more practice your Shih Tzu gets, the better she will become, leading to monetary rewards for winning competitions. These competitions are open to all canines, such as neutered dogs and mixed breeds.

For the most part, your Shih Tzu will need a safely enclosed yard to run, explore, and investigate. Though a safely fenced yard can keep your puppy safe, these dogs do not do well cooped up in a dog run. This is especially problematic if there is more than one dog in the unit with them. The Shih Tzu is also known to be quite the digger. They are especially fond of digging under fences to escape.

Many Shih Tzu owners find it useful to put aside an area just for digging rather than discouraging this behavior. This activity is also a great way to allow your puppy to expel energy. However, if you want to prevent this behavior, keep the area around the fence wet and always remember to meet your Shih Tzu exercise needs.

Recommended For You