When is your dog most excited? The moment you wear your shoes, he's at your toes, wagging his tail, doing circles around you. However for a lot of us, taking our pup for a walk equals to him “doing his business”. That is just one of the reasons!
Before we delve into the specifics of making the most out of your dog walks, let us answer the most important question.
Why Should You Walk Your Dog?
Obesity is a major concern with a majority of our dogs. It leads to a number of health problems, especially among seniors. A good, long walk burns excess calories and keeps the weight off. It not only improves the joint health but also stimulates his digestive health.
Your enthusiastic pup is an energy powerhouse. Of course, he gets bored easily. This explains the chewed up cushion covers and constant nibbling on furniture. Daily walks will help him exert this energy in a productive way. A well exercised dog equals a happy, healthy and well-mannered dog.
Things To Take Care Of While Walking Your Dog
1. Basics Of Dog Walking
- If your dog is young, take him for walks at least two times in a day.
- If you have a large or medium breed, the duration of the walk can vary from thirty minutes to one hour.
- Always keep your dog on leash for his own safety.
- Use a muzzle if he tends to gobble up non-edibles on the road.
- Stick to the walk timings.
2. Take Shorter Walks If You Have A Senior Dog
A Dog Wearing Zoof Grips!
Senior dogs require a lot more care than the young ones do. It is vital that we listen to them and understand what they want and need. When it comes to senior dogs, getting the right amount of exercise is absolutely necessary because that will help in making them healthier. Give your dog long breaks in between these walks as it can get a little too tiring for them.
Old dogs usually wish to relieve themselves frequently and going for a number of walks, everyday, can also help them with this. Apart from that, these walks can help their blood and muscles move which may decrease the possibility of arthritis. Check out Zoof Grips - that has been made especially for senior dogs. These are indoor shoes that will prevent your dog from slipping. They will provide him with the much needed support and balance.
3. Let The Noses Investigate
While walking your dog, you must have noticed how happy and curious he gets once he steps into the outside world. Everything seems to be new and exciting and thus, he tries to properly observe everything. Observation is always done through your dog's nose.
Smelling and sniffing around can give your dog a lot of information about that particular place. Your dog's vision is not as clear as yours and so, his nose becomes his eyes as it helps him identify his surroundings on a deeper level. It gives your dog mental satisfaction and puts him at ease when he uses his nose while going for a walk.
4. Always Carry A Water Bottle
Hydration Is Always Important!
Your pup does not have enough pores in him due to his thick fur. So it is tough for him to immediately adapt to a different temperature. Due to excessive panting caused by walking or running, he can get extremely dehydrated and may pass out or faint. To avoid such circumstances, it is advisable to carry a water bottle and give your dog small water breaks during their walking session.
This is especially important if you have a senior dog. As elder dogs requires frequent hydration and refreshment. Drinking water will not only make him feel better, but he will also feel more energized and will wish to walk for a longer period of time. You can also check out water bottles that have been made especially for dogs. They are durable, easy to use and extremely efficient.
5. Protect The Paws
Your dog's paws are one of his most sensitive and exposed body parts. Dog owners usually neglect taking care of their dog's paws while on a walk. This is because they do not know how harmful it can be for their dogs. Bacteria and germs can easily enter your dog's body from his uncovered paws. You must always make sure to clean your dog’s paws once you are back home from a walking session.
Check thoroughly since it is easy for germs to hide in between your dog’s paws. You must look at the weather before you decide to take a stroll. Poaching, hot weather can heat up the pavement, which in turn, can burn your dog’s paw pads. Monsoon is not the best season to go out either. Your dog may step on potholes and puddles that contain dangerous infection-causing bacteria.
To protect your dog from these problems, get him a pair of dog shoes. These are fashionable and extremely useful. Just as shoes protect us from these problems, dog shoes will save your dog's paws by creating an insulating layer between him and the unhygienic ground. Check out Zoof Boots as they are sole-less, waterproof dog boots that are great for first-time users. They are also available in the quirkiest designs.
If you need something sturdy, you can check out Zoof Casuals. These come with a Velcro design. With a large number of different colors and sizes, we assure you that you will find the pawfect shoe for your dog.
6. Train The Mind With Dog Treats
Food and dogs is a match made in heaven. Use these treats like a positive reinforcement. They will bring him to focus and make him want to listen to you so that he can obtain his reward. Make sure that you only give your dog a treat when he deserves it and not when he has done something wrong. Treats can be homemade or store-bought.
You should never give your dog a treat if you are trying to distract him from another person or another dog, nor should you give it to him in order to calm him down. Giving your dog a treat just before going home can help him understand that his behavior was good during the walk. Hence, your dog will most likely continue it in order to receive more delicious rewards.
7. Be Close To Him If He Feel Anxious
Be There For Your Dogs When They Feel Nervous Or Anxious
Just like us, your dog also has a personality of his own. He may feel shy, scared, happy, angry or even anxious. In a number of cases, dogs have shown symptoms of anxiety when they are about to go for a walk. This happens once they realize that they are in an unfamiliar territory or if they see another dog. To help calm your dog down, you should keep the leash closer to you so that he walks right beside you.
Being close to you will automatically make him feel safer. In addition to this, keep talking to him in a soothing tone. Let him understand that everything is normal and there is nothing to worry about. Lastly, it would be helpful if you choose a quiet place, with less people, to walk your dog if he shows extreme symptoms of feeling anxious.
8. Have Fun During Walks
Don’t Forget To Play With Your Dog!
Sometimes, your dog's curious mind may run out of things to explore if you always walk on the same path. So, how about you change your walking route every once in a while? It will keep things interesting for both you and him! This will make your dog eager as he will want to properly explore and observe the new grounds that he is walking in. Going to the local park can also help as it will give your dog a chance to play with other children and take in the beauty of nature.
Taking a toy, for instance, a Frisbee, and playing with your dog during a walk can act as a stimulating experience. You can also choose to take a ball with you and play fetch with him. This will not only assist him in exercising a little, but it will also help in strengthening the bond shared between the two of you.
9. Do Not Forget To Clean Up After
Always Maintain Hygiene
The motive behind going for a walk, apart from giving your dog daily exercise, is to let him relieve himself. Never forget to carry a poop bag or a newspaper when you are going for a walk with your dog. It is absolutely necessary that you pick up your his poop after he is done.
A dog's poop contains ringworms and many other germs. They are dangerous to the environment and should be disposed of carefully and immediately. Letting the poop rest can also attract flies which can cause more health issues in that area. Thus, avoid these problems and keep your environment clean for you and your dog.
Once back home, you must massage your dog’s leg muscles, play soothing music and even talk to him. This will help him relax. Even though being with close to you is a very calming feeling, it will just make your dog feel better if you put in a little more effort.
It is always a fun time when you spend it with your dog. It becomes even more exciting when you participate in something which your dog loves, that is, going for a walk! Regular exercise will save him from the evil clutches of obesity. It will do wonders for his physical as well as mental health. So, make sure you never skip out on it. After all, a fit and happy dog means a fit and happy owner!
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