These dogs are athletic and energetic--and while they're pretty small, Schipperke exercise needs are fairly high for a dog of this size. Schips are intelligent too, so they'll need a variety of activities that both condition them physically (walking, fetch) and stimulate them mentally (games, canine sports).
Adult Schipperkes, depending on their age and overall activity level, will need 45-60 minutes of proper exercise each day. You can start exercising your Schip puppy when it's three months old by taking it on short walks, then you can increase the walks' length as the pup grows.
Precautions with Schipperke exercise:
- Don't exercise puppies too hard before they're nine months old
- A leash is required when exercising in public; leash training during puppyhood is highly recommended
- Schips are excellent escape artists, so yards should be securely fenced to keep the dog from running off
- May overheat easily; don't exercise in sweltering temps
Exercising your Schip every day is a must. These dogs are feisty, active, and headstrong--and without consistent activity they'll simply become behavioral nightmares. Regular exercise will be great for both the dog's and your own peace of mind! A few exercise ideas:
- Walking: Two 20-minute walks per day is a good target
- Fetch/Frisbee: These dogs love chasing a ball, stick, or Frisbee
- Hide-and-Seek: Great indoor activity; give the dog a treat when it finds you
- Hiking: Excellent bonding activity
- Canine Sports: If properly trained, Schips can excel at agility trials and other events
- Laser Pointer: These dogs will go nuts chasing that "little red dot"
When indoors, it's good to give your Schip access to balls or toys that will allow the dog to burn excess energy. It's also recommended that you have a regular exercise schedule for the dog, such as walks after breakfast and dinner and playtime in the afternoon.