Walking the dog

July 9, 2016

Dogs need walks; a tired dog is a happy dog. The walk can build a bond between you and your dog, get them well needed exercise and ensure they see you as their leader. Start the walk armed with poo bags, treats, toys and water for you both if it is hot.

 

I usually find that the first thing dogs want to do on a walk is go to the toilet and get rid of some energy, so start the walk near a dog poo bin and in a nice safe space where they can have a run.

Be the leader, dogs appreciate a leader.  Change directions without warning and get them to follow you, change the pace, and suddenly go into a jog, zigzag back and forth across the field.  Do not call them unless needed, expect them to follow you.

Play some games on the walk, such as hide and seek, where you literally hide for a minute, making sure you have your eye on them at all times, and when they find you give them lots of praise.  Ensure they are happy at all times, if they look frightened or confused, call their name and let them see you.  Play with a toy, hide it and get them to find it or with a ball.

Add variety, for both of for you. Doing the same walk two or three times a day can become very dull.

If you have a dog that loves swimming, try and find a safe place for them to swim, they will really appreciate it.

Practice walking nicely on the lead, while walking, they should be next to you.  If they are in front, stop and wait until they return to your side and then set off again.

Practice off lead walking. Treat it as a game and encourage your dog to do a controlled walk by your side.  Carry a treat or toy to give as a reward when you have finished. Always do this in a safe area, away from vehicles and road. Keep the sessions sort and sweet as it is tiring for both of you.

Do some obedience training. Throughout the walk, have short bursts of training to break up the walk, keep it interesting and improve their obedience.  If they play up, stop the walk, make them sit and calm down and then continue.

Reward your dog after the walk; give them their food or a treat for them to settle down with to avoid the issue of the dog not wanting the walk to finish.

Socialise, bring a friend for you both.

Have a goal.  Go to a dog friendly restaurant or shop to have a place to look forward to, have a rest and break up the walk.

 

 

 

 

 

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