How much exercise does a Saint Bernard need?

how much exercise does a saint bernard need

The St. Bernard is simply an imposing appearance and is generally perceived as very quiet and calm. But is this true? In this article I will discuss how much exercise a Saint Bernard needs.

How much exercise does a Saint Bernard need? A Saint Bernard does not need a lot of exercise. With 30 to 60 minutes a day, you have a good foundation to keep the gentle giant busy. A longer walk in nature and some head work is usually enough to keep the Saint Bernard busy.

Does a Saint Bernard need a lot of exercise?

No, a Saint Bernard does not need a lot of exercise compared to other dog breeds.

However, a longer walk of about 30 minutes should be on the agenda. But this in any weather.

Because of its origins and history, the Saint Bernard does not mind cold or wet weather, and is especially comfortable in winter or cold weather. He was bred and works for the cold climate in the Swiss mountains.

However, hot summer days St. Bernard does not like so much. In this case, it is best to go for a walk early in the morning or late in the evening to protect your St. Bernard from the heat.

The St. Bernard originated in Switzerland and was originally used as an avalanche dog. Due to its increasingly extreme breeding with size and weight in mind, it is not really used for that purpose anymore.

How often does a Saint Bernard need to be walked?

You should walk your Saint Bernard at least 2 times a day for 20-30 minutes.

The Saint Bernard is not an athlete, but still loves leisurely walks in nature.

In addition, 1 to 2 smaller pee rounds throughout the day and your Saint Bernard is happy.

Besides the daily walk, it is ideal if you have a garden or a fenced yard where the Saint Bernard can move freely.

They love to be outside and are not dogs that want to be indoors all day.

How much exercise does a Saint Bernard puppy need?

With the Saint Bernard puppy it is important not to overload him. As already mentioned, unfortunately, the breeding goes further and further in the direction of larger and heavier.

This puts more and more stress on the bones and joints. Especially in puppy age, too much stress can lead to later damage.

So make sure that your Saint Bernard puppy grows slowly in size and weight. Better a little too slim than too fat.

Many owners of large breeds (any breed) are very proud when their puppy is very large and heavy.

The ego of the owner is satisfied here at the expense of the dog.

As a rule of thumb, you can use 5 minutes of controlled walking per month of life. This means that you can walk your 3-month-old St. Bernard puppy for about 15 minutes.

But you won’t get very far. Puppies are just exploring the world. Everything is interesting. New smells, sounds, other dogs and much more.

All are impressions that your puppy must absorb and process. This is exhausting and makes your Saint Bernard puppy tired. So don’t be surprised if he stops every 5 meters and sits down.

exercise a St. Bernard

Can a Saint Bernard run for a long time?

A Saint Bernard can run about 5 kilometers if he can set the pace. Slow and leisurely pace is ideal for a Saint Bernard.

However, it is important that your Saint Bernard is fully grown before you take him for long walks. The bones and joints must be fully developed.

Also, you should get your dog used to the distance slowly and not run 5 kilometers at a stretch right away.

How do I exercise a Saint Bernard?

Long walks in nature are ideal to keep the Saint Bernard busy. In addition, head work, for example, through education and obedience, is an important point.

A large garden in which he can move freely and which he can guard is a great task and occupation.

But sometimes you have to persuade your St. Bernard to go for a walk. They also like to stay in the garden. But for health reasons it is important that they have daily exercise.

Why walking and exercise is important for a Saint Bernard

As with all leisurely dogs, it is important that the Saint Bernard gets enough exercise.

The Saint Bernard puts on weight quickly and becomes overweight. This then has a negative effect on their joints. Hip and elbow problems (HD / ED) are typical for a St. Bernard.

Daily exercise to avoid overweight as well as training for the muscles that protect against injuries is therefore necessary.

In addition, a Saint Bernard can also show undesirable behavior such as excessive barking or even aggressiveness in the long term if not enough exercise.

Frequently asked questions

Is it possible to keep a Saint Bernard in an apartment?

It is not mandatory that you have a large house. A Saint Bernard does need a lot of space because of his size, but he does not need a “run” in the house.

However, he should have access to a garden or yard because he loves to be outside. So an apartment on the top floor is not recommended.

Is a Saint Bernard a family dog?

The Saint Bernard is gentle, tolerant and very fond of children, which makes it an ideal family dog.

Is the Saint Bernard a watch dog?

The St. Bernard has a guarding and protective instinct that should not be underestimated. He would protect and defend his family and territory at all costs.

Conclusion: How much exercise does a Saint Bernard need?

A Saint Bernard needs relatively little exercise, 30 to 60 minutes. One to two daily walks in nature and some head work are usually enough to keep a St. Bernard happy. However, regular exercise is important to keep a Saint Bernard healthy and, most importantly, not heavier or fatter than necessary.

Rita (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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