HOW MUCH EXERCISE DOES A DOBERMAN NEED?
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ENERGY To excel at police and military work, the Doberman must have exceptional mental and physical energy and a quick walk around the block just won’t cut it with these gorgeous canines. They are generally considered a high energy breed and need as much physical exercise as they do mental. You may have some individuals that are higher or lower energy than others, but in general, Dobermans have a high energy level that can border on moderate. Given their Velcro-like attachment to a primary person, this person will be the one who needs to put in the extra effort the Doberman requires to be a calm member of the family. When you're thinking about ways to burn off their energy, be mindful of their joints throughout their whole life, so it's often better to opt for longer and more frequent walks or jogs over runs. You should plan to go for a long, brisk walk at least several times a day with your Doberman and ideally incorporate some hills or agility work to keep them in shape. TRAINABILITY/INTELLIGENCE The Doberman is a highly intelligent breed that is very capable of excelling at mentally demanding canine sports like obedience and Schutzhund. They can be stubborn at times no matter what level of training you take them to, but regularly working on their obedience will exercise their big brains wonderfully. It's actually a cuticle part of having a Doberman because they are so powerful and have deeply rooted protection instincts, and need a lot of outdoor activity. I know it sounds like having a Doberman requires a lot of extra effort on your part as their canine leader, and that is absolutely true. But you also have to remember that exercising their brain and body often happens at the same time. For example, every time you take them on a walk, don't just walk the neighborhood for an hour. Incorporate sit, stay, down commands along the way and double back on your path or run every so often to refine their heeling. I go over all of this more in-depth in my Boot Camp course, and it's great for adult dogs. If you're just starting out with your Doberman puppy, though, check out the Perfect Puppy course that builds a rock-solid foundation for their lifetime training. PLAYTIME Dobermans are natural guardians, which means they are wherever you are. Don't expect them to work off all their energy in the backyard while you watch TV, especially if they are the only canine in the home. They'll play with other dogs of all sizes, but it's best if you supervise because of their size and high energy. Playing with other dogs only works off so much of their mental energy, though, and they need structured playtime with you as their canine leader. Most Dobermans will to roll around and wrestle, but others might prefer to sprint after a large ball with you or love games where they have to use their powerful sense of smell. They can be taught to fetch easily, but it's not a game that comes as naturally to them as it does to other breeds. No matter how you exercise them, your Doberman will always be happiest when they are making you happy and getting quality time with their whole family.