Do dalmatians need a lot of exercise?

how long can a dalmatian be left alone

Dogs that are somewhere on television are often very popular. So it is with the Dalmatian, which is the focus of many due to the movie 101 Dalmatians. However, it is not a good idea to buy a dog just because of its appearance or media hype.

You should first address the needs of the breed. One of the most important points is the workload. Do Dalmatians need a lot of exercise and exactly how much exercise does a Dalmatian need? We will clarify that in this article.

Yes, the Dalmatian needs a relatively large amount of exercise. The Dalmatian belongs to the running dogs and needs in any case 2 hours of intensive exercise in the form of long walks, running or even cycling a day. His urge to move results from his original use as an escort dog for carriages. Thus, he covers many kilometers every day without a break. In addition to physical exercise, the Dalmatian also needs mental exercise.

How much exercise does a Dalmatian need?

The Dalmatian needs at least 2 hours of exercise sometimes 3 hours, spread over 2 to 3 extensive walks a day.

The Dalmatian was used and bred for generations as a companion dog of carriages.
They are used to walk long distances or run a little faster. You have to be aware of this as a future Dalmatian owner.

If he gets enough exercise, you can keep your Dalmatian in an apartment.

How to exercise a Dalmatian?


Because of its original use, the Dalmatian needs one thing: exercise. Take your Dalmatian into the woods for long extended walks.

It is important that your Dalmatian can run free because of his urge to move. Since he has almost no hunting instinct, this is usually not a problem.

In winter, the Dalmatian needs a coat when you are out in cold weather.

Running with the Dalmatian:

A Dalmatian is a perfect partner for you if you are a runner. This will give you a good opportunity to train him a little more intensively than normal walks.


If you don’t want to run yourself, you can also let your Dalmatian run alongside you on a bicycle. Or you can use biking as another increase in physical activity.


Agility is another great way to exercise your Dalmatian and have fun with your dog. Joint activities strengthen your relationship in parallel.

Riding companion:

As a riding companion you can offer the former carriage companion dog a welcome change and occupation.

how to exercise a dalmatian

When can you start running with a Dalmatian?

Even though the Dalmatian is a running dog, you must not overload him in the first months. The joints, muscles and bones are still growing and can be damaged if you put too much stress on them.

The negative consequences then usually occur in adulthood, when your Dalmatian is fully grown and has reached a weight of 66 pounds (30 kg) or more.

In no case should you go running with your Dalmatian puppy or young dog before he is fully grown.

As a rule, it is said that you can go running with your dog from the age of about 1 year. For small dog breeds this can be a little earlier, for large breeds like the Dalmatian a little later.

Before you go running with your Dalmatian, you should talk to your veterinarian. He can give you a professional assessment of your dog’s physical development.

The problem is often that young dogs at 6 or 8 months have endless energy and would love to go running with you.

You will also have no pain while running, complete the running session with you without any problems. Possible damage will only have a negative effect later. The increased load on the joints that are not yet fully developed should not be underestimated.

Social contact with other dogs

If you have the opportunity, offer your Dalmatian the chance to play with other dogs.

At an official dog park or at a meeting with friends, your Dalmatian comes into contact with other dogs and can train his social behavior at the same time.

Mental exercise

Even though the Dalmatian is made for physical work, you have to train him mentally in between.
Mental training starts with obedience. Learning and executing commands like “sit”, “down”, “heel” etc. is already head work for the Dalmatian and makes him tired.

In addition to learning and executing commands, it’s always good to do nose work with your dog. All dogs love to sniff. Sniffing alone makes a Dalmatian tired and is a good way to exercise him

You can easily take a food dummy with you on a walk and let your dog search in between.

How much exercise do Dalmatian puppies need?

As a rule of thumb, one generally speaks of 5 minutes of exercise for a puppy per month of life. Of course, this is only an approximate guideline and can vary from dog to dog.

The 5 minutes is the amount of time you can take your puppy for a controlled walk at a time. After that, puppies usually cannot concentrate enough.

It is important that you consider this 5 minutes as a rough guideline. A Dalmatian puppy can certainly walk more minutes per month than a Pug puppy.

There can also be differences within a breed.

Rule number 1: Pay attention to your puppy and use common sense to judge.

The 5 minutes also refers to the duration per walk not per day. So you can walk a 3 month old puppy 2-3 times for 15 minutes

When you walk your Dalmatian puppy it is important that you let him explore the environment. Give him time to absorb and process new smells and sounds. This is usually enough to keep a puppy busy.

In addition, you can keep him mentally busy by teaching him the basic commands.

With active dog breeds, it is very important that they also learn to calm down from the beginning. If you keep your Dalmatian puppy constantly busy from the beginning, you may end up with a powerhouse that needs exercise without end because he is used to it.

With our Molossians this was not such a problem, because they are not known as sportsmen.

Signs your Dalmatian isn’t getting enough exercise

Lack of exercise can lead to the following behaviors in your Dalmatian:

  • He may start destroying objects in the house
  • Your Dalmatian may become nervous and/or anxious over time with too little exercise.
  • too little exercise often leads to frustration and aggressive behavior
  • excessive barking can also be a consequence of too little exercise
  • some dogs pee on the couch or in the apartment when they do not get enough exercise.

Often “bad behavior” in dogs is a consequence of too little exercis.

Sufficient exercise is also important if your Dalamtian has to be left alone.

do dalmatians need a lot of exercise
Sabine Glä

Is a dalmatian right for me?

The Dalmatian is suitable for you, if you are an active person who like to be outside in nature. At the same time, the Dalmatian is a great family dog and good for first time owners.

As mentioned earlier, it is of elementary importance that you are active and provide enough exercise for your Dalmatian. Then it is the ideal dog for you.

If you are looking for a dog that you can walk 2-3 times a day for 30 minutes and otherwise like to lie on the couch, the Dalmatian is not the right breed for you.

If you are looking for a large dog maybe the Broholmer is an alaternative. The Broholmer needs much less exercise than the Dalmatian.

Conclusion: How much exercise does a Dalmatian need?

A Dalmatian usually needs 2-3 hours of exercise a day in the form of long walks, runs or bike rides. The Dalmatian is made for physical work and needs it.

In addition to physical exercise, it is also important to challenge the Dalmatian mentally. (Contributing image)


I am Marco and I have the pleasure of living with 3 large Mastiff-type dog breeds. I would like to share my dog-related experiences on this blog

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