How much Exercise does a German Shepherd Need?

Before we discuss the German shepherd exercise needs let us look at some brief about the dog. The German Shepherd dog was initially bred for herding utility breed and later on has been used for multiple purposes like the implementation of the law, as guard dogs and, in rescue works.

German Shepherds are very intelligent, loyal, and, are pets with quite high energy levels and are easy to train. Due to their high energy levels, they are required to exercise 2 hours per day(or at least 1 hour). 

If they don’t exercise enough, they may develop health issues (both behavioral and physical).

German Shepherds are easy to train because of their good recall capability.

German Shepherd Exercise -Its Walking Time

The German Shepherd needs daily walking to release their stored energy. This walk allows your German Shepherd to excite the mind with the sights, sounds, and, smells they see.

german shepherd walking

The length of the walk depends solely on your time and energy as the German Shepherd can walk all day. Optimally, it should be at least 30 minutes each day. It can be a good idea if it is once a day or two walks a day if your schedule permits.

Also Read: Adopting a German Shepherd Advice

Dogs are fond of walking, so prefer to schedule your walk at the same time each day. Parks or open spaces could be a great place for a walk if your dog is obedient and has a good memory.

You can also train them to walk on sand or climb uphill during the walk to increase their walking resistance.


Usually, a German shepherd is highly energetic, strong, and has good stamina. High-intensity games and strength training is preferred to keep their muscles healthy to support the joints and tendons that can prevent injuries.

On the other hand, maintaining health simulation is also very important.

Activities for your German Shepherd

Activities like Fetch, Frisbee, Jolly Ball, Fetch Pole can help in keeping your German shepherd active.

Fetch is a perfect toy for a German Shepherd to make it use the stored energy. Automatic Ball launchers can be of more use to train your dogs in a better way.

Frisbee is another great activity to train your dog as it requires more skill, coordination, and perfect timing. You can slowly increase the level of Frisbee from low to high depending on the pet’s coordination.

A Flirt pole is a long handle wherein you rotate it and your dog tries to chase it. It works for the dog’s overall strengthening of muscles.

Jolly Ball is another great activity to strengthen their muscles where the dog pushes and chases the ball.

You can also try running, biking, or skating with your dog.

As German Shepherds are highly energetic, they can be your good companions. Make sure you increase the distance of running or skating with time to avoid injuries.

You can also try to make your dog run up and down on a staircase. The faster your dog runs, the more energy is released.

German Shepherd Swimming

Swimming is another great exercise for a German Shepherd as it uses all the muscle groups, especially, the front legs and shoulders. It has a low impact on the joints and tendons.

german shepherd swimming

There are many toys available in the market for your dog that can roll and move on their own. This will make your dog play for enough time which simulates its physical and mental growth.

Time with other dogs

Let your dog play with other dogs which can make your dog mingle with other dogs and simulate their mental skills.

German Shepherds love to dig like many other dogs.  Provide some space for your dog depending on the weather conditions. There are many more activities like this by which you can make your German Shepherd more strong.

German shepherd with other dogs
Two German Shepherds playing tug-of-war with a colourful scarf in winter.

The exercise schedule for a German Shepherd varies in puppies and grow-ups. The puppies are to be given minimum workout as their bones, muscles, and tendons are still growing.

Also Read: Are German Shepherds Good with other Dogs?

Allowing them to play with other dogs would be an appropriate exercise to burn out the stored energy.

As your dog grows up the exercise can be increased (at least for 2 hours a day). Generally, the time of walk for a puppy is around 5 minutes every month.

Mental stimulation is equally important for puppies and can tire them just as much as physical activity.

Exercise for an older GSD

German Shepherd becomes less active and comparatively slow as it grows older. It is still important for it to maintain energy and mobility and manage its weight.

Exercise for an older dog must be limited as these dogs may develop arthritis and over-exercising makes them tired. Finally, a German Shepherd needs at least 30-45 minutes of exercise to keep up their high energy levels and strong stamina.

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