Golden Retrievers generally have tons of energy and love to exercise with you, but it should ideally be on soft ground and probably best to limit it to a couple of miles – especially if your golden is less than 18 months old (unless your vet recommends different). There can be some concerns in the breed with joint issues (elbow and hips dysplasia are common hereditary problems) which is why especially at a young age when the bones are not fully developed it is good to be careful with your golden and make sure that he /she is not displaying any signs of joint pain (it is probably something your vet will also keep an eye out for aswell at your checkups anyway).
Key points when jogging or cycling with your golden include:
- In the summer especially, avoid asphalt and concrete; it gets really hot and is hard on the paws. Instead, choose a grass or dirt-covered route.
- Keep an eye on your dog and slow down if you see that he is lagging.
- Always bring enough water for the both of you.
- Exercise when it’s coolest – either in the morning or at night. Because dogs don’t have the same cooling mechanisms as humans, avoid situations where your golden can become overheated quickly.
- When exercising at night, attach reflective or illuminated strips to your golden retrievers collar.
Goldens are not prone to obesity, but as with any dog their weight should be watched closely. This is especially true for elderly or less active dogs.