Now is a great time to venture outdoors and enjoy the benefits of walking. Remember, as with humans, a gradual increase in duration and intensity of exercise is important for our dogs. Even though they will romp endlessly, if they are unfit they will experience the discomfort of stiffness and pain following excessive activity. Start gradually, and increase the time and intensity in small weekly increments. Morning walks in the woods with my miniature poodle, Ebony, provide a place to breathe, center and prepare for my day. Every day I feel so grateful that this is my world. Such opportunity.