Walking the dog may seem like an ordinary activity that requires no prior thought or planning. This is not always the case as some dogs may have trouble feeling happy and safe while walking outside their usual home. Other dogs are rowdy and rambunctious when walking and senior dogs can have trouble with excessive movement or cold temperatures. If you are a tried and true dog owner or someone who is looking for information before they bring a new dog home there is surely something here for you! Check out these dog walking tips before you head out on your next pet friendly adventure!
Dog Walking tips
Use a Short Leash
Retractable leashes are common and they seem great, but in reality they allow your pet way more freedom than they should have and can be dangerous. Keep your pet on a fixed, short, lead. This will help you maintain control and it will ultimately help keep you and your dog safe and happy when walking.
Stay in Control
You are the person in charge. Weather you have a small dog or a large one there will be times when your dog wants to be in charge. Make sure that your dog is walking beside you or behind you. This establishes who is in charge in the mind of your dog. This set up will also allow you to avoid any problems when crossing streets, meeting strangers, and can eliminate pulling issues.
Reward your Dog
Make sure that you reward your dog both during and after their walk. When they do something good praise them and remind them that they are a good dog. This positive reinforcement will help keep them eager to do good things! You can also help them learn what is expected with this method. If they receive no treat they will not be eager to do that same behavior a second time. Much like training them to do tricks, rewards will encourage repeat behaviors!
Choose a Familiar Path
If you are experienced in dog walking you may be less concerned with this particular tip. Taking a walk on a familiar path will help keep dogs that have security issues calm. They will see and smell familiar things and remain unalarmed. This is also a good idea when you are walking with a new dog! You won’t know how they will react and being somewhere that you know and trust can help avoid any unexpected surprises. Slowly branch out as your dog becomes more comfortable with walking!
This is by far the best tip I can give. Start training your dog to go on walks at an early age. This will help blow off some of that extra puppy energy and it will help teach them these skills when they are most impressionable. If you wait to start walking your dog until they are fully grown you may have trouble acclimating them to the rules and procedures. They can become unmanageable and even frightened when leaving the house on a leash if they are not trained early. Be careful not to overdo it with young dogs, slowly build up your walking times as they grow.
How do you ensure a successful dog walking session?