All dogs require exercise. It’s an essential aspect of who they are and what they do. Its important for both their health and well-being, although it must be said that certain breeds of dog do need more than others. But what about Dobermans? How much exercise does this relatively large sturdy breed require each day? I spent some time researching to find out exactly what owners should expect and be able to provide.
So, how much exercise does a Doberman need? An adult Doberman needs about 2 hours of exercise per day, on average. Although age, weight and health status are all factors that should influence the total amount of structured physical activity this breed receives.
When it comes to the Doberman, this is not the breed that likes to sit around. They are known for being very active, both physically and mentally.
By giving this dog structured exercise, not only will you be keeping them limber and strengthening their muscles, joints and supporting healthy digestion, but you’ll also reduce the likelihood of bad behaviors; including barking, chewing and digging.
Plus, a well exercised Dobie will be more trusting and confident in you and their environment.
In many ways, exercising has important benefits for us owners too.
And if you are looking at the Doberman breed; you should expect a lot of it!
Let us now take a closer look at the average energy levels of this athletic dog, before taking a closer look at signs they need more activity, and some specific ideas to consider if you do decide to own one!
Do Dobermans Have A Lot Of Energy?
Compared to other dogs of their size, Dobermans are known for having a lot of energy. They are a large, hyper breed that likes to be entertained. This is true of both puppies and adults.
They need to engage in a significant amount of activity, although the exact amount of exercise required will depend on their age, along with their individual personality and health status.
Remember, activity includes both physical and mental stimulation!
That being said, you should expect to be kept bust when owning one of these dogs. Not only to help them maintain a healthy physique, but to help keep them out of trouble.
Besides, this is a working dog after all.
In fact, this was once the “Tax Collectors Dog“.
But is this really much of a surprise when we consider that they are so alert, compactly built yet muscular, fast and powerful?
While they are relatively sleek, they are somewhat substantial and this body needs sufficient exercise to stay in optimal condition.
And then there is the mental aspect of it all too.
Just like humans, dogs get bored. The Doberman in particular does so quite quickly.
Now, imagine if you took a very hyper person and didn’t give them enough to keep them occupied with.
Eventually, frustration and boredom will get the better of them. We will explore what this will look like in this dog breed a little more detail later, though.
Just know that when you take in a Doberman, you should be prepared to take them on several walks, and play with them daily.
They are a large breed that requires a lot of space to move around, so you should keep this in mind when you think about if you have an appropriate home to take one in.
These dogs need large backyards and active owners.
A tight apartment in a busy city is unlikely to be the right environment for this breed.
The exact amount of exercise required does depend on age, health and fitness; so there is no exact amount that can be specified for every Dober,an.
That being said there are averages to work from.
I’ll be summarizing the requirements for the different stages of life in the following sections.
How Much Exercise Does A Doberman Puppy Need?
A Doberman puppy should receive around 5 minutes of structured exercise, for each month that they have been alive.
As such, the amount of exercise a Doberman puppy needs will depend on their age.
Structured exercise is considered being taken for a walk, on a harness, or engaging in some more rigorous play such as a game of fetch.
Consider, that this does not include general play; which this particular breed will need quite a lot of!
These recommendations are also known as the ‘5 minute rule’ and are recommended and advised for most larger dog breeds.
Taking this formula:
- A 2 month old Doberman only needs 10 minutes of exercise per day,
- A 3 month old Doberman only needs 15 minutes of exercise per day
- A 4 month old Doberman only needs 20 minutes of exercise per day
- A 5 month old Doberman only needs 25 minutes of exercise per day
- A 6 month old Doberman only needs 30 minutes of exercise per day
Of course, this is being cautious. But it is the advice of the experts.
You do need to consider that a puppy Doberman has a lot of growing to do to reach their adult size.
As such, their bones and joints can easily be damaged by over-exercising, which can impact growth and lead to issues.
Beyond this, in the beginning, you may also want to be careful of where you walk them.
Are there other dogs around, for instance? While this may a good way to socialize your puppy and introduce them to others – you need to ensure it is safe for them to do so.
Equally, you need to ensure they have had all of their vaccinations and jabs before it is safe to do. Discussing this with a vet is the best approach to take here.
But, as your puppy gets older you can look to be more adventurous with where you go.
But, this does not come without its challenges.
While very young puppies may still sleep a lot, they generally have a lot of energy once they are old enough to leave their mothers.
Puppies love to play and have a lot of energy and affection to give.
Expect to engage in light play for up to 4 hours with your Doberman puppy. But this should not be for hours straight, nor should it be too taxing on them.
Instead, providing your puppy with plenty of puppy toys, like these best sellers on Amazon, while engaging in the playtime yourself, comes strongly advised.
This may sounds like a lot of time; but puppies require constant stimulation in order to keep themselves out of trouble.
Otherwise, if you cannot or are unable to keep them occupied; they are more likely to wreak havoc on your home.
This is why it is also a good idea to use this time to also start training, when they are also relatively impressionable.
In doing so, they will learn what is expected of them, what good behavior looks like, and how to expend their energy on their toys (and not your furniture!)
From there, you’ll be able to trust them more when it comes to entertaining themselves.
Still, your Doberman will never reach a point where they can be left to their own devices for too long. This is a dog that needs to be included.
Even if you are not looking to exercise or play, you also should be looking to take your Doberman puppy outside regularly.
They need to learn about where and when to go to the toilet; not forgetting that puppies have much less bladder control than their more matured counterparts.
How Much Exercise Does An Adult Doberman Need?
An adult Doberman should be receiving up to 2 hours of exercise per day. Although, this should not necessarily be given all in one go, and should be considered the average for the breed.
While there are some dogs of the breed who will always remain hyper, others will be more laid back and less willing.
So, how and when you provide this exercise may require a little bit of imagination, and working with the preferences of your dog.
Try to plan out some routine activities that your dog can look forward to – it is great for you to exercise as well!
Of course, you should also remember that 2 hours is only an estimate. There are several circumstances where Dobermans will fall above (or below) this average.
Plus, there will be some days that your dog may exercise a lot more – and require a day or two after to recuperate – that’s fine and to be expected too.
Signs A Doberman Needs More Exercise
If you are not sure whether or not your Doberman is getting sufficient exercise, you can consider the following signs as an indication they need to get out more:
If your dog is more hyper than usual, or running around trying to expend energy, it may help to give them a little more exercise to tire themselves out.
After their walks, your dog should seem a little more relaxed.
If this isn’t the case (or your dog is incredibly insistent on trying to stay out longer), maybe you should consider lengthening the walks or taking them out on an additional one later.
Or you could consider making it more challenging, if you are up to it of course!
The step beyond merely being hyper is misbehaving.
As stated earlier, dogs need to be entertained.
If a dog gets bored, they can’t simply turn on the TV or pick up a game controller.
When they want attention, they will seek it in other ways.
Additionally, these bursts of misbehaving may be a way for them to really expel their frustrations from not getting enough activity.
Dobermans are incredibly smart.
While this means they are generally fast to train – there is also a negative component you need to look out for.
Smart dogs can cause a lot of damage.
Imagine the havoc a dog can cause when it learns how to open doors or drawers!
Dogs don’t have an innate evil nature, and often their poor behavior can be explained by needing more training and not getting the stimulation they need.
Whether it is a consistent or sudden problem, consider giving a rowdy dog more exercise and seeing if it helps with behavioral problems.
It is not all in psychology, though. A clear indication a dog needs to have more exercise is that they are putting on some extra pounds.
Dobermans are a large breed, but they are rather slender.
Chubby pets can be adorable, but they have so many medical problems that are tough on you and your dog.
If you notice that your Doberman is gaining too much weight, you may want to consult a vet and review their diet.
If it’s due to another underlying medical condition, a veterinarian can guide you to the right solution.
If it is due to an energy imbalance, exercise can help.
Keep in mind that lazy dogs need exercise too. You may need to coerce a stubborn Doberman to exercise for the sake of their health.
For the most part, your dog will let you know if they are getting the right amount of exercise. You will only need to look at their behavior and temperament.
Although in some dogs it can be harder to observe than others. Each dog has their own personality, which needs to be considered.
Exercise Ideas For Dobermans:
Finding fun activities is a great way to get stubborn dogs excited about being active. Plus, it can help keep you enthused too!
Consider the following fun ideas for you and your Doberman to reach those 2 hours of exercise a day:
- Classic neighborhood walks
- Hikes in the local forest/ mountains
- Fetch in the backyard/ dog park,
- Runs or jobs on open trails
- Swimming at the (dog-friendly) beach or lake
- Doggy play dates with your friends’ dogs
- Backyard agility
- Tug of war
Always take into account the age of your dog, stamina, health and other factors such as whom may be around.
You want to keep you, other people, and other dogs safe at all times.
Can You Run With A Doberman?
You can generally go running with a Doberman, so long as they are of sufficient age (over 1 year is advised) and they are not suffering from any physical injury or condition.
You’ll also need to consider the stamina of your dog, although chances are they will be able to outrun you relatively easily!
Nonetheless, taking your Doberman on a run is a great way for you both to stay in shape together.
There are just a few things you may want to keep in mind when it comes to running with them:
- Make sure to use an appropriate harness. You don’t want one that will easily tangle or allow them break free from you.
- Keep their training level and obedience in mind before you hit the streets. Running is a little bit more involved than walking. Running with a rowdy dog can get a little complicated and can happen fast. They may find it difficult to quickly stop their movements or even listen. If your dog gets too wrapped up in things, a large Doberman may be difficult to control – especially when they have their full adrenaline rush going on.
- Take your environment into consideration before you try running with your dog as well. Dobermans are large dogs that need a lot of room to move around freely. If you don’t have the space for you both to be running safely, you may accidentally injure yourself (or someone else). If your neighborhood isn’t cut out for your dog runs, consider taking your dog to a local park or up in the woods for some more space.
Dobermans are fantastic dogs to own. Highly affectionate, obedient and intelligent in temperament.
Although, they are very energetic and alert – they do require a lot of exercise to remain happy and healthy.
As such, this particular dog breed is best suited to a home with a lot of space. Better yet would be one with a securely fenced yard.
Equally, this dog will thrive with owners whom are willing and able to meet their physical and emotional needs; dedicated to keeping them occupied and busy with exercise, entertainment and enough toys!
While 2 hours is the average and recommended amount of exercise for this breed, you will need to work your way up to this.
Puppies are energetic, but they do need to be gently introduced to structured exercise.
Still, time must be spent to keep them busy.
So, if this sounds like it is going to be too much of a commitment, consider exploring some other breeds that aren’t as energetic as Dobermans.
While all dogs require some degree of physical activity to stay happy and healthy, some are more naturally energetic than others. So, there many be another option out there for you.
But if you or your family are particularly active, you will not go wrong with the Doberman!
I am a practiced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site I created to share everything I’ve learned about pet ownership over the years and my extensive research along the way.