Taking your dog for a walk is a must to ensure their wellness. Walking your dog every day lowers their blood pressure, improves their cardiovascular fitness, and enables them to develop strong bones and muscles. Walking also keeps your furry friend busy, staving off boredom.
However, walking your dog is an art that requires certain strategies to master. This task isn’t just about taking a leash and letting your dog wear it. You also need to discipline your dog to ensure that they’re on their best behavior when you take them for walks. Over time, this will make your life easier as a pet owner and ensure that both of you get to enjoy the walk.
Pay attention to the following dos and don’ts when walking your dog:
Do Begin The Walk In The Right Way
Do you know that there’s actually a right and wrong way to begin your walk? And doing the former can influence the behavior of your furry friend during the walk.
Instead of walking over to your dog to put on their leash, call them by name and let them come to you. This simple gesture establishes your leader position even before you begin the walk. This will encourage your dog to follow your orders as you start walking.
Don’t Forget To Stay Vocal
Staying vocal is important to establish a good walking etiquette. This ensures that your dog and everyone around you remains comfortable whenever you’re out for walks.
For example, if you have issues with dog jumping and biting on walks, give commands to correct your dog’s behavior. You can give out a strong ‘stop’ command and stand still as if you’re not going to continue the walk. This will show your dog that their behavior is wrong, and they’ll suffer consequences, discontinue the walk if they don’t behave properly.
You should also be vocal to other dog walkers to gain new friends or to other pedestrians who want to give your dog pets.
Do Bring All Of The Essentials With You
As a responsible pet owner, you shouldn’t only bring a leash when you take your dog for a walk. Your dog requires more than that to ensure that they remain comfortable, clean, and safe during their walk.
Regardless of the duration and route of the walk, you should always bring water for your dog. If possible, invest in dog water bottles as these will make it easier for dogs to drink water. You should also bring several poop bags with you. It’s your responsibility to pick up after your dog when you’re out for walks, so make sure you do it.
Don’t Walk Your Dog On Hot Cement Or Pavement
Yes, you should take your dog for a walk as regularly as possible, but this doesn’t mean you should compromise their health and safety. You should pay attention to the weather outside because taking them for walks when the weather is too hot can be detrimental to their health.
Before taking your dog for a walk, place your hand or barefoot on the cement or pavement for at least seven seconds. If it’s too hot for your skin, the surface is also too hot for your pet. Opt to reschedule your walk when the temperature cools down during the day.
Do Check Your Pet Before And After The Walk
Walks are generally healthy but taking a sick dog out can do more than good. This is one of the reasons why you should carefully check your pet before and after their walks.
Before going out, assess if your dog is acting normally and looking healthy. If there are any changes to their disposition, namely being lethargic or no longer showing signs of excitement, consider postponing your walk and take your dog to a veterinarian first.
After walking, take the time to check your dog again. Focus on their paws and furs for any ticks, fleas, and other foreign debris. Remove them before letting your dog enter your home to prevent any diseases from spreading. This is especially important if you have other pets at home.
Don’t Let Your Dogs Off-Leash
Regardless of how tempting it is to let your furry friend run free, don’t do it when you’re out. Your dog should always be leashed when out for walks to prevent accidents and injuries. Most importantly, keeping your dog leashed at all times will prevent them from getting lost.
The only time that you should let your dog off-leash is when you’re in an enclosed dog park. Even then, you need to carefully supervise your dog at all times.
It’s Easy When You Know How
Taking your dog for walks is easier said than done. This is especially true if you have several pets and all of them are hyperactive.
If taking your dog for walks has become a stressful activity, use all of the tips in this article as your guide to turn things around. Walking your dog will eventually become a breeze if you follow these dos and don’ts!