German shepherds will always need a huge amount of exercise in order to keep them happy and healthy. As with most large dogs, keeping them active, even in their later years, is very important. But because they are large dogs, arthritis and other joint problems are very common, which might make it more and more difficult to get your dog up and out.
Keeping your dog moving is one of the best ways to prevent joint issues from becoming a serious problem later on.
Old German Shepherd Walks
What should you do with your aging German shepherd? Even if your GSD is no longer interested in running and jumping like he used to be, going on long walks can still be great for your dog. Taking your dog out on smooth terrain that will not agitate his elbows or knees will ensure that he gets the exercise he needs, without putting strain on his joints.
Swimming can be great
Another great way to exercise your older German shepherd is by taking him somewhere where he can swim. Just like swimming is recommended for aging humans who need a low impact activity to keep them active, swimming can help your dog stretch his legs, without putting unnecessary strain on parts of his body that might already be suffering.
Light movement is key
Whatever you do, do not assume that he wants to lay around the house, just because his joints might be bothering him. If all he does is lay down all day, this could actually be much worse for his joints than if you actually got him on his leash and took him out for a walk. Remember that animals in motion tend to stay in motion. If you want to prevent serious joint issues from occurring, keep your German shepherd moving!