Saturday, January 05, 2008

Is my yellow Labrador Retriever getting enough Playtime?

From: Josephine (New South Wales)

Subject: 7 week old yellow Labrador Retriever not getting enough playtime

Labrador Retriever Name: Ringo

Reader's E-mail - Josephine Writes:

Hi there,

I recently was given a 7 week old Labrador Golden Retriever. I named him Ringo and he is my first dog ever! I don't know much about them, so i have been spending a lot of time reading up and looking up articles on the Internet about how to care for my lab pup. I work full time and i feel like I'm not giving him enough playtime and so i am wondering how much play time should i be giving my 7week old pup? At the moment my schedule is as follow:

6.00 am take Ringo out from the laundry room (where he sleeps overnight) to the backyard to do his business: wee & poo

6.10-6.20am run around/play with him

6.30am feed and say good bye to Ringo (and then i get ready for work) - He is left in my backyard with his chew toys, he has about 5 chew toys and his dog house has a lambswool mat inside to keep him warm.

6.30-6.45pm (i get back from work) run around & play with Ringo

6.45-7.00pm feed

7.00-7.15pm walk around with him so he can do his business

7.15-9.00pm i leave him in the back yard to walk around and run around on his own.

9.00-9.30pm i take him inside the house to spend time with me

9.30pm i take him to the laundry room to sleep.

I'm not sure if my schedule is proper, I'm due to see my vet on Sunday and i will ask more questions. i came across your website so i thought if i could get some help from you then i would really appreciate it.

thank you so much for your time.

All About Labradors Blog Answer:

Continue Reading...

Hello Josephine,

The information given here is to help you learn more about your Labrador Retriever and not to replace your veterinarian's advice. Disclaimer

Thank you for writing and congratulations on getting your new Labrador Retriever!! Let the adventures begin.

The Labrador Retriever was originally bred for hunting and field work.. They are never, ever short on energy and need plenty of exercise and playtime on a regular basis. They need plenty of time to relieve all their energy to keep them happy and well behaved.

If they are kept confined all the times, be it the house, apartment, or any other small spaces, they will release their energy in those spaces. This will usually end in destructive behavior such as destroying of objects, house soiling, chewing and other unwanted behavior.

You don't need to spend every minute of every day with your Labrador Retriever, but you do need to put in a good amount of time with them on a daily basis.

Labradors love to play and can enjoy getting a great deal of exercise through play and love spending time around its human companions. Interactive play can provide them with mental stimulation as well as much needed physical exercise.

Its great that you have a backyard that provides Ringo the opportunity to run and play. You might want to try to have someone (family member, friend, etc) come by during the day to spend some time with him as he is alone for a good stretch of the day (this can also lead to unwanted behaviors such as digging, destroying property, etc).

Adding interactive games such as fetch, frisbee, and tracking games will provide healthy exercise for Ringo. After he has had his necessary vaccinations (your veterinarian will let you know), nice long walks and runs (outside of the backyard) are advisable. This will also help in socialization process for Ringo.

As for toys for Ringo, I do highly recommend the Kong toys. Not only do these products provide physical exercise for your Labrador, but much needed mental exercise. Some of the best ones, are the ones you can stuff treats into and your Labrador Retriever has to work to get them out. Just make sure you purchase the appropriate size toy for your Labrador.

Everyone's schedule is different Josephine, but I do believe that spending a minimum of two hours of quality time with your Labrador each day is only fair for him (believe me, others will give you different opinions on this). I don't count the time feeding or grooming to be part of this time, just pure quality play and exercise in that time.

Hope this helps. With owning a new Labrador Retriever, I'm sure you will have many other questions to ask. If at any time you should need help, please don't hesitate to e-mail me, even if you have to send a hundred different e-mails.

Once again congrats on getting a new Labrador Retriever.

Take care of yourself and Ringo,

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