Dog Walking Tips Everyone Should Know
Walking a dog is one of the best canine tasks for pet lovers. Daily walks strengthen the bond between the dog and his master. Not only both would cherish each other's company but also a fresh breath of air and lush sidewalks keeps their mental and physical health in check.
Well, paddling your bikes while walking your dogs or skating along is one more way to enjoy this recreational activity. Anyways, walking your pooch may seem as simple as just walking down the lane but wait, it's not. There are some important things you may miss out to consider while walking your dog. Go through the article to explore the intricacies we usually tend to ignore.
Here you go.
1. Walk Ahead of The Dog
Every dog has a notorious temperament portion which makes them disregard your commands. The dogs will eventually tend to follow their instincts or your guidance whichever holds a greater impact on them. Hence, walking behind the dog will surely give you a good chance of supervising him during the walk but it instills a behavioral trait in your dog's head that he is the pack leader.
Ultimately, this practice will encourage your pooch to ignore your command and do his of his will. Also, you will find his aggression towards you gradually increasing and warmth equally decreasing.
On the contrary, when you walk ahead of the dog holding the leash in the backward direction will instill the exact opposite. The dog will need to follow you and learn it is you who leads the pack and not him.
However, walking ahead of the dog does not mean you cannot let him loose to sniff around a bit. Instead, promote positive enforcement and maintain the figure of alpha yet the gracious leader.
Use Front-Clip Harness
Having said that, going for a harness with a front clip becomes a must-have dog accessory. Generally, the back-clip harness makes pulling and loitering very easy for the dog. It will not only facilitate the pooch to pull you on the path he likes better but also instills his dominance over you.
In contrast to that, the front clip harness disrupts the intensity of pooch's efforts. Such a harness will make the handling a notorious Fido a kid's job. You would already know the wonders this type of harness can do if you have used it. Do you like to walk your dog in different and adventurous places? Reading reviews of a GoPro dog harness can help you to know how to shoot the adventures from your dog's point of view on your walk.
2. Keep The Leash Short
In continuation of the above section, keeping the leash short is advisable. A short leash provides the dog with limited area to walk with your proximity. Additionally, the short leash will ease off the handling efforts you usually put in to control the same dog with a longer leash.
No matter if your dog is a small or a large breed, he should be within a maximum of three feet of radius from you. Also, try to avoid getting a retractable leash, it is less of a useful commodity.
Never Allow Pulling
Keeping a short leash is compelling enforcement for a dog and he will try to agitate to that decorum by pulling hard. However, you shall patiently cope up with the dog and calm him by talking to him and even commanding him to stop.
Consistently practicing the talking and commanding drill on your dog will have some fruitful outcomes. Hence, maintain your cool and give your dog some time to adapt to the new set of rules. Also, appreciate his obedience with treats or pats on the back.
3. Reward Him For Every Obedience Trick
Considering your dog has started to show positive behavioral traits. Make sure, the dog is doing all those actions because he craves of the treats and some gestures of appreciation from you. So, upon getting the good behavior from your dog, you should give your dog what he wants.
Give your dog a treat every time he follows a tough command from you. Along with the treats, use patting his back, rubbing his fur, etc. as a similar gesture of appreciation. It will promote the dog's participation during another tough command-and-follow drill.
Never Let His Good/Bad Behavior Go In Vain
Adding to the fact, most of the dogs are sensitive to negligence. The notorious ones can use your negligence as an acceptance to perform dirty deeds. On the other hand, the disciplined ones can get aggressive if their obedience goes neglected for very long.
Allow Him to Sniff Around for a While
While talking about rewards and paying attention in this section, giving treats or appreciating are not the only tools. Giving your pooch a little free time also counts as an appreciation. You can let your dog loose in order to let him sniff around and maybe chase the squirrels in the park. The best way to do so is by throwing game towards him and letting him fetch(Frisbie, softball, stick, etc.).
Remember, giving him a break from discipline is also an exercise to inculcate discipline.
Appreciate His Efforts By Rewards
At the last, you should schedule his early morning breakfast after the walk. Therefore, the dog will learn about the association if getting a big-bowl breakfast treat after every walk. In this manner, you will be able to inculcate discipline and manage your working schedule too.
4. Keep Extra Poop Collecting Bags
This is one piece of advice we would like everyone to follow. Carrying an extra poop collection bag is a good practice. It will not help you not only to collect your dog's poop if he has to take a dump multiple times but also help someone in need of a bag during a similar situation.
5. Make Every Walk Worth
Walking a dog will include many of the exercises i.e. joint movement, cardiovascular acceleration, nervous functioning, mental stimulation by sniffing, burning calories, bonding with you, exploring the neighborhood, socializing (in a dog park), etc.
Hence, plan a big long walk which is suitable for your dog depending on his physical capabilities. Never settle the daily walks for anything less than 20 mins of slow and 10 mins of intense sessions.
Increase and decrease the walking sessions in accordance with summer's heat or winter's cold.
Keep The Dog Hydrated
After a long walk or an intense small run, your doggie will need water to stay hydrated just like you do. So, before you leave for a walk, make sure potable room temperature drinking water will be available when you will return. It is essential to accelerate the body cooling process in dogs.
Living with a non-human companion actually requires more efforts from your side as you're a smarter living being among you and your pets. That said, you have to realize that every small gesture and behavior of yours affects their behavior.
Moreover, you need to understand you don't have to imply harsh training methods on your pooch. All you need to take care for is to train your dog to be happy in following your lead and how to stay obedient to his master while maintaining his health and well-being.