Walking and feeding your dog are probably two important tasks in your morning routine. But you might not know which one you should do first. Some people will advise you to feed your pup and then take him out. On the other hand, it’s not safe nor fun to exercise right after eating. So it’s normal to wonder whether you should feed or walk your dog first in the morning.
In general, you should walk your dog before feeding him in the morning. Walking first will help burn energy before eating and avoid problems with digestion. After some physical activity, your dog is also more likely to be hungry. But you should still wait between 30 and 60 minutes after the walk to serve breakfast.
Otherwise, it can lead to digestive problems. Feeding your dog too soon before or after a walk might cause belly pain, vomiting, and bloat. However, the risk is lower on an empty stomach. That’s why it’s generally better to walk your dog first in the morning and feed him afterward.
But eating beforehand can also be an option. You just have to wait long enough after breakfast to walk your dog. So both scenarios are possible. Now let’s explore each of them to find out which is better for you.
Should You Feed Your Dog First Thing In The Morning?
You can feed your dog first thing in the morning if he’s hungry and you don’t exercise right after. Eating immediately after waking up will provide him with the energy he needs for the day. So feeding your dog before anything else might seem like a good idea.
However, it will restrict what you can do afterward. As I already said, dogs shouldn’t exercise right after eating. So you will have to wait before you can take your dog out for a walk. But how long?
How Long Should A Dog Wait To Walk After Eating?
You should wait at least 1 or 2 hours to walk your dog after eating. It will give enough time for the stomach to digest and relax before doing some physical activity. Walking your dog right after eating can lead to digestive problems. So waiting a few hours between meals and walks is essential.
The longer you wait, the better. However, the food, dog, and walk can all have an impact on how long you should wait. The bigger the meal is, the longer it will take to digest. Besides that, some dogs take longer than others to process food.
The intensity and duration of the walk are other factors to consider. You will have to wait much longer to go for a long and vigorous hike than for a short and light walk. So make sure to adapt the waiting time according to your dog and the situation.
Drawbacks Of Feeding Your Dog First
Although a dog can walk after eating, it comes with some disadvantages. First, you will have to wait at least 1 hour before doing something. Then, some dogs are just not hungry in the morning. So they might refuse to eat before going out for a walk.
Exercising with a full stomach also makes your dog prone to digestive problems, including Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV), commonly known as bloat. It’s a life-threatening condition that consists of the stomach that expands and twists.
GDV can occur if you walk your dog too soon after eating. That’s one of the main reasons you must separate mealtimes and exercise with a few hours of rest. But even if you wait long enough, there are still some risks of bloat if you feed your dog first in the morning.
So what’s the solution? Maybe walking first and then eating? Let’s explore that alternative!
Should You Walk Your Dog First Thing In The Morning?
Walking your dog first thing in the morning is an excellent idea. It will allow him to potty, exercise, and take some fresh air early in the day. A morning walk can also whet your dog’s appetite. However, you shouldn’t feed him right away. Eating too soon after physical activity can lead to digestive problems. The body and stomach need to relax before being ready for a meal. So you should wait to feed your dog breakfast after a morning walk.
How Long After Walking Should You Feed Your Dog?
Dogs shouldn’t eat when they are still warm and panting from exercise. As a general rule, you should wait at least 30 minutes to feed your dog after a morning walk. But waiting around 1 hour or even longer would be safer. It will allow your dog to recover from exercise and be ready for breakfast.
So, Should You Feed or Walk Your Dog First?
It’s generally more advisable to walk your dog first in the morning and feed him about one hour later. Walking as soon as possible after waking up will allow him to burn pent-up energy, go outside, and do his business. Eating breakfast after the walk can make your dog less prone to digestive problems.
Another advantage of walking first is that your dog will be more receptive to food for training. Exercising on an empty stomach is also more comfortable and convenient. The temperature and environment might be more agreeable early in the day too.
Besides that, some dogs won’t be hungry in the morning. So they might refuse to eat before doing physical activity. However, don’t feed your dog right after the walk. You should wait at least 30 to 60 minutes. It will give enough time for the body and stomach to relax.
Then, you can serve breakfast to your dog. But walking beforehand isn’t necessary. You can still feed your dog first in the morning if he’s hungry, and you wait at least 1 hour to walk or do any other type of exercise afterward.
At What Time Should You Feed Your Dog In The Morning?
The best time to feed your dog in the morning will depend on when you wake up and what you do beforehand. If you decide to walk first thing in the morning, you should ideally wait 1 hour to serve breakfast to your dog afterward. But if you feed him before anything else, you should probably do it as soon as possible.
The longer you wait, the more you delay his first activity of the day. Don’t forget that he can do practically nothing for one or two hours following breakfast. That’s why it’s often better to walk first or, at least, feed your dog early.
What About Feeding & Walking Your Dog Other Than In The Morning?
It’s pretty much the same principles regardless of the time of day, but I have another article on that subject. Learn more about whether your dog should walk before or after eating!
Last Thoughts About Feeding or Walking Your Dog First In The Morning!
The ideal morning routine would be to walk your dog as soon as you get up, wait around 1 hour, and then serve breakfast. It will allow him to exercise and eat early in the day without any problem. But depending on your dog and schedule, feeding him first might be better.
Either way, you must allow enough time between the walk and mealtime. Eating right after or before walking can both be bad for your dog. So make sure to plan your morning routine properly.
Let’s Walk & Feed That Dog Early!