Dog walking tips for pet parents
Walking your dog is one of the best bits of owning a dog and we have put together a few dog walking tips so you get the most out of this important time with your furry friend! You can have so much fun dog walking, either spending quality time together just the two of your or with friends and their dogs too. Walking is so good for your dog’s health and yours too, helping keep the cardiovascular and respiratory systems in good working order. Walking also has many great benefits as a low impact exercise on joint health and mobility as well as the musculoskeletal system. Those are just some of the benefits to your physical health, there are many positives side effects of dog walking on your mental health as well, such as lifting your mood and an opportunity to socialise/meet other dog walkers.
Keeping safe whilst dog walking
Dog walking is very enjoyable and relaxing but it’s important you are prepared and take sensible precautions to ensure both you are your dog(s) are safe during your walks. Here are a few safety dog walking tips;
- If you are walking your dog early in the morning or late at night, when it is likely to be dark or getting dark, please wear a reflective jacket so you are easily spotted by drivers and cyclists who are out at that time.
- Try to avoid walking your dog alone, especially late at night and certainly not on a route you don’t know very well.
- Ensure you have done lots of training with your dog so you have a good idea of how they will react in different situations for example around other dogs, around other dog walkers, how do they cope with traffic or busy roads?
- If you are walking your dog alone as it’s unavoidable, please make sure you have a mobile phone with you and that is has a good amount of charge in it so you can call for help in an emergency.
- It’s always a good idea to tell someone you know that you are going on a dog walk so they can check in with you later to ensure you are both home safe and sound.
- Carry a small first aid kit in case you or your dog sustain a minor injury during your walk.
Which route should I take?
There are so many wonderful places you can walk your dogs now, from beautiful inner city gardens to adventuring though woodlands and nearby streams. There are some very picturesque locations in the UK and no doubt several on your door step that you haven’t even explored yet. Most dog owners have a few dog routes they use regularly as well as some that are perhaps further afield and a bit of a longer route that they use at weekends, which is great as both you and your dog will enjoy and appreciate the variety.
If you have the opportunity try different types of walks, e.g. around parks and housing estates close to home so your dog can be around light traffic without feeling anxious, woodland walks in the Country, walks nearby streams and rivers so they can have a little paddle and water play. Beaches are wonderful places to for dog walking, have fun seeing how your dog likes walking with sand beneath their paws, it’s quite a different sensation for them. Watch them get a sandy nose as they sniff the sand to what other furry friends have walked their too. Don’t forget to take some photos of your dog’s paw prints in the sand 🙂
Ensuring you are properly prepared for your dog walk is really important, for example you don’t want to get caught short with no poo bags and your dog has decided they need to go! Its always good to have a few treats in your bag or pocket so you can do a few training tricks or there may be a time where you need to grab your dog’s attention quickly and treats can come in very handy for this. Take a couple of toys with you so if you find a nice open grass area you can play some games such as fetch with a ball, frisby or rope toy or whatever toy your dog loves to play with most on a walk.
In your dog walking bag needs to be a fresh drink of water for your dog and a bowl to drink from as they will get thirsty on their adventures and it’s important your dog drinks enough. During the hotter summer months this is imperative so please make sure you pack a fresh drink for your dog before you set off on your walk. Why not treat your dog to their very own water bottle personalised with their unique paw print, their photo and a message of your choice. “Keep your paws off” has been a popular message on the personalised water bottles that have already been ordered, although you can have your dog’s water bottle personalised exactly as you wish.
Next week our blog will be focussing on Purrrfect Christmas Gifts for Cat Lovers.