How Much Exercise
Does an English Mastiff Need?
A Lot? A Little? Here's The Right, Healthy Balance...

by Ken Alden

English Mastiffs are very large breeds that are affectionate, gentle, and sometimes lazy. With dogs this big, they often want to relax and laze around which encourages weight gain. Exercise is key to help prevent this from happening but how much exercise do they need?

How Much Exercise Does An English Mastiff Need?

  • Adult English Mastiffs need up to an hour a day. For up to two year old puppies 15 minutes a day will do.
  • They must not be over exercised because of the weight strain on their bones and joints can do damage.
  • Simple walks and extra playtime will keep them from accumulating undue pressure on the joints and gaining weight.

Read on below to learn more about the different types of exercises you can try with your English Mastiff puppy and adult. We also give you some tips to have in mind when exercising your pet friend.

Pro-tip: Ever try lifting an English Mastiff? Their weight can hurt not only your back but their joints when they hop down from cars, sofas or even your bed. To protect your back and theirs check out the best Mastiff ramps on now.

How much exercise does an English Mastiff need?

Growing Up...

As they grow, English Mastiffs need moderate exercise for them to develop the muscular and skeletal frame to handle their weight when they reach maturity. 

For example, a puppy that is two years old needs little exercise as the skeletal frame is still growing. You wouldn't want a puppy to develop skeletal issues and have to deal with inflamed joints. 

Mastiffs like to please people and can end up doing some exercises that will cause them harm. That's why it's vital to get comprehensive details on the right exercise as a Mastiff owner. how much exercise does an english mastiff need?

english mastiff puppy

Since it's such a large breed, it's important to be mindfull of health issues that come with such a heavy dog. This article of ours is a great place to start to learn all about their health issues.

English Mastiff Puppy Exercises

A two-year-old puppy is still undergoing muscular and skeletal growth. However, this breed is known to get overweight due to its laid-back nature. You should avoid placing the puppy in its crate for a long time. 

You can start with yard exercises to ensure the puppy stays active while still resting at his preferred time. Short walks for 15 minutes are excellent for your growing pup. Avoid extreme exercises like walking for an hour or running with the puppy, as this could lead to problems like hip dysplasia. 

If you have a big yard, you can allow the puppy to run and play around as much as he likes. However, the surface needs to be soft and not made of concrete. 

Remember that exercise for a Mastiff puppy can sometimes be an individual thing. You may have a pup that is growing too fast or get one that grows evenly and is athletic. A puppy that is gaining weight too fast will need to start with regular yard exercise. Athletic puppies will do well with a 15-minute walk. 

You can tell when you've overdone the walk when your puppies stiff after resting from the walk. That means you need to reduce the next walk. Also, if your pup starts panting, that indicates you've gone far. Note that a tired pip can injure ligaments and tendons. Have walks on grass or trails as walks on concrete can be difficult for your little one's bones and joints.

english mastiff learn more

A Mastiff puppy not only needs exercising but socializing as well at this early age. Here's an article of ours that gives socializing tips and things to be mindful of.

Pro-tip: English Mastiff anxiety, aggression, destructive chewing, jumping up, fearfulness, and other behaviors can be controlled with the right training program.

Here’s a great course that addresses these issues along with many other dog training basics: Check it out now!

Different Types of Exercises for Your Mastiff Adult

Exercising your Mastiff requires lots of patience and practice. Nevertheless, if you are looking for some ideas to exercise your dog, here's a few exercises you could try: 

Regular Walks...

Take your adult English Mastiff for at least a 30-minute walk. Going with your pet for regular daily walks helps to release any pent-up physical and mental energy. You need to be careful when taking your dog outside for walks. Always ensure that he is on a leash and don't let the dog lead the way. You need to set the pace at all times.

Walks at least three times in a week are recommended as Mastiffs do not have much energy and tend to get lazy. 

When the weather is humid or hot, limit any strenuous activity as this could lead to labored breathing or cause the dog to overheat. You need to plan the walk at a time when temperatures outside are cool to avoid these problems. 

Moreover, always go for the short and relaxed paced walks before meals. Going for these regular walks will also help with mental stimulation as the Mastiff will get to absorb the smell, sights, and sounds. 

Strengthening Exercises...

Incorporating strengthening exercises in your Mastiff's schedule is critical as it helps prevent injury. These exercises build muscle to provide stability and support to the joints and tendons. They also help improve bone density. 

Furthermore, strengthening exercises increase the cardiovascular system functioning and prevent obesity by helping your dog maintain a healthy weight. 

Some of the strengthening exercises you could try with your English Mastiff include:

  • Tug of war. Tug of war is a popular game that you can try with your Mastiff. Ensure that the dog uses its strength to crouch and pull back. The point is to make sure the dog takes and releases the tug toy on command. 

  • Climbing stairs. If you are stuck indoors due to weather conditions outside, you may want to try stair climbing. Walking with your dog up and down the stairs ensures that our furry friend's muscles are strengthened and that he gets core stability. Note that you need to keep this a controlled exercise to avoid causing injury to the dog. how much exercise does an english mastiff need?

  • Spring pole. All you need is a spring attached to a rope that hangs from a beam or branch. Tie a treat at the end of the spring. That gives your Mastiff time to play outside even when you are not around.

Pro-tip: English Mastiff's (and their owners) love dog crates…and for good reasons. Crates keep dogs from mischief while you're away, are perfect for house training, for traveling by car, and provide the dog a place to de-stress. Check out the best Mastiff crates on now.

Mental Stimulation Exercises...

It's vital to incorporate activities that stimulate the mind apart from the free play and walks. Mental stimulation activities require lots of energy, like physical exercises. A great example of this exercise is puzzle toys—excellent when your Mastiff is home alone. These toys help improve a dog's problem-solving skills and test their intelligence.

Here's a few great puzzle toys from

Puzzle Exercise Game For Dogs
This game is a great way for your Mastiff to not only exercise it’s brain, but get rewarded by a treat when successful!

SnuffleMat For Large Dogs
Your pooch will love checking out for hours all of the treat filled nooks and crannies of this soft and washable puzzle mat.

Interactive Puzzle Game For Dogs
A popular variation of the above game…it’s a great way to keep your pooch occupied for hours with the accompanied treat of course!

How Much Exercise Does An English Mastiff Need...Final Thoughts

An English Mastiff requires some form of exercise despite being laid back in nature. Incorporating a daily walk for 15 minutes, strengthening exercises, and mental stimulation activities are vital in promoting your pet's overall health and ensure the recommended weight is maintained. Talk to your vet about other possible exercise options. 

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About Author

About the Author...

Ken Alden, a dedicated Mastiff owner for over eight years, is acclaimed for his expertise in care, grooming, and training. Read more About Me and my dog Shadow.

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