Dog walking might just be one of the best and worst parts of being a doggy parent. When you were younger and asked your parents for a dog, chances are they responded by saying dog ownership is a big responsibility, including having to walk your dog daily come rain or shine. Well, your parents were right!
Taking your dog for walks provides more than just potty breaks: The Animal Foundation notes that regularly walking your dog helps your dog with getting socialization, exercise, fresh air, mental stimulation, as well as opportunities to train your dog.
Since dog walking is so important to having a healthy and well-balanced dog, we have compiled some tips for how to have a better dog walking experience.
Have a Set Route, But Try to Change It Up Sometimes
One of the top tips from dog experts and dog walkers will always mention allowing your dog to sniff about. This is because it provides a natural and mentally stimulating activity for your pup. They’ll experience new sights, smells and wildlife to keep them busy.
Leading from this, it can be important to change your route. If you find yourself mindlessly hobbling down the same pathways, your dog is probably doing the same. One suggestion is to change up the route you walk your dog every-so-often to allow your dog to explore new sights and smells along the way.
If Your Dog Pulls, Try A Front-Clip Harness
If your pooch skipped a few lessons at dog training, they may have poor dog walking etiquette. This could mean they don’t allow you to lead and often pull-ahead.
When your pup does this, it can cause irritation to their skin. One great way to prevent this is to use a front-clip leash. These types of dog leashes allow your dog to walk without the leash pulling on their neck and will reduce skin irritation around the area.
If your dog already has some skin irritation or chafing from using their traditional leash, our Squishface Wrinkle Wipes are great for soothing irritated skin and helps to repair skin right at the surface thanks to its unique ingredient, phytosphingosine.
Make Sure to Bring Water
Water is very important for your dog. Dogs should be drinking one ounce of water per pound of doggy weight. If you are heading out for a long walk, or if it is a particularly warm day outside, be sure to bring water for your dog. You can even find portable water bowls that are easy to take on the go.
Always Ask Other Dog Owners Before Allowing Dogs to Meet
While it may be a fun prospect for dogs to be able to meet in the park and have a sniff around, there are some aggressive dogs – and some owners – that simply don’t like it. So, to ensure a safe dog walking experience for everyone, proper dog etiquette is to ask the owner before letting your pup approach another dog.
Try Using A Dog Walker on Days You’re Busy
Everyone has those days where work and life can sometimes get in the way of our everyday responsibilities. Or, days where ill-health might prevent an owner from walking their dog. In these cases, your pup still needs their daily stroll and bathroom breaks.
For days when your schedule is too packed, we suggest trying an experienced local dog walker service to make sure your dog gets enough exercise and physical activity. Many services even offer dog walkers who are certified with a Canine First Aid Certificate to give you that extra peace of mind.
Make Sure Your Pup Is Carrying Their Doggy-ID
Be sure to have your dog wear dog tags with your contact information in case anything happens and you become separated from your dog during your walk. It is also a good idea to have your dog microchipped.Plan for the Weather and Time of Day
If you are going for a walk with your dog at night, whip out that adorable high-visibility reflective jacket and stick it on your dog. And, because you are just as important, make sure you are wearing reflective and high visibility clothing so you can be seen in the dark.
If it is a super-hot day, or even a bright and sunny morning, place your hand on the sidewalk. If you can hold it there for more than five seconds without pain, go ahead. But, if the floor feels like lava, then your pup’s pads won’t be able to take the heat either and it can lead to heatstroke. A great solution is to get some dog boots for your pup.
Remember to Take Doggy Bags with You
A must-have for dog walking etiquette is doggy bags. Picking up after your pup is not only good etiquette, it also prevents the spread of diseases and helps to keep your community clean. So, don’t forget your biodegradable doggy bags and dispose of your pooch’s waste properly for good dog walking etiquette.
Follow these tips and you will be well on your way to having a better dog walking experience for you and your pup!
Don’t forget to regularly check out our blog for more great tips and tricks for dogs and their owners.