For good health and happiness, a Setter needs to be walked three times a day. Two of these walks may be short, 15-30 minutes, while the last one, in the middle of the day, must be longer, around 30-60 minutes.
Resting in a small pool of water after running in the woods a warm summer day.
The ideal situation would be midday vigorous half-hour runs in large, safe, empty fields; the fields would need to be fenced, or the dog would need to be very reliable in coming when called (this usually takes many years of training). Because most people do not have access to acres of fenced field, they have to adapt their dog's exercise to their situation, especially in urban or suburban settings. Some people (including myself) drive their Setters to wilderness areas for runs, ride bicycles with their dogs next to them on leash, jog with their dogs on leash, or use a long, retractable leash (flexi-leash) to walk their dog in a park or neighborhood area. If you enjoy hiking in the outdoors, an English Setter will fit right into your lifestyle.
Many people find that having an active English Setter inspires them to get more exercise than they normally would, thus benefiting human as well as canine health.
Because the skeletons of puppies are not completely calcified until they are 2 years old, puppies and young dogs should be exercised with care. A good breeder can provide guidance about the proper way to safely exercise an English Setter puppy.
Even though they are energetic dogs when outdoors, English Setters adapt very well to being in the house and usually settle right down for a nice snooze after their run or walk.
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