The Irish wolfhound needs exercise just like any other dog. Although many people believe this large dog needs more exercise than a smaller breed dog, this is not the case. They are a dog that is very adaptable and will adapt to what their families give them. Because of their size, however, they do need lots of room to run around and stretch their legs.
When they are puppies, they will determine how much exercise they need. Puppies are always actively running, jumping, and playing and the Irish wolfhound is no exception. They do not need to be given exercise as young pups. When they are given too much forced exercise, it can affect their growth and the way their bones develop. As they begin to grow up, however, they will need to be taken out. They don't fully mature until they are two years old or more, but their bodies are growing at a very fast rate. There is nothing they love more than going for long walks with their family members.
Many owners of the Irish wolfhound claim their dog is a big couch potato and loves it that way. The dog has probably just gotten used to that kind of life. You may remember that the Irish wolfhound was originally bred as a sight hound. They were built to chase their prey and they did it at a full gallop, being recognized for their great speed and endurance. While we don't have the same task for them today, they still love a good run. Because he is such a tall dog with such long legs, he needs a large yard to really stretch the legs out and give them exercise. This is one reason why it is recommended that the Irish wolfhound be kept in a large fenced yard where he can run around at his own pace. Even kept in a pen, the dog still loves taking a long walk in the woods or the country or anyplace you choose to take him. It doesn't take much to keep the Irish wolfhound happy, as long as he's with his family.
The Irish wolfhound is not a particularly active breed like they were years ago, but they still need the exercise. Many Irish wolfhounds that are too idle and lack proper exercise tend to become destructive around the house from too much pent-up energy. Because of their size, it's not unusual for them to try to put their paws on you or the children. If they so choose, they can stand up and take food off the counters, as many owners have found out. Most owners have found that the more exercise their Irish wolfhound gets, the quieter and calmer he was in the house.