Most trainers and canine experts recommend at least 30
to 45 minutes of exercise for your dog (provided your
dog is healthy enough to endure exercise) every single
day. This can provide numerous behaviour and health
benefits. It should be noted that the walk is more
valuable than other types of exercise because it offers
training opportunities and helps to build the human and
animal bond. However, proper dog walking is a little
more complicated than just putting on the leash and
heading out the front door. For the best results,
consider some of the following best practices:
1. Always walk with your dog beside you or behind you.
You are the leader and the dog is the follower. When the
dog is out in front, this helps reinforce the idea that
they are in control of the relationship.
2. Try not to walk them during the hottest time of the
day, especially in the summer. It may not be a bad idea
to bring water along for the dog to drink if showing
signs of overheating.
3. Do not play tug of war. There should typically be a
bit of slack in the leash. If your dog is constantly
pulling you and you are providing tension back – this
is a behavioural issue that needs to be corrected.
Consult with a trainer or professional if you are unable
to remedy this yourself.
4. Beware of other dogs. Do not let your pet approach
other animals on a whim. Make sure that you have cleared
it with the other dog's owner before allowing your
animals to do a meet and greet. Just because your dog
plays well with others does not mean that other dogs
will respond in kind.
5. Pick the right leash or collar. Not every leash /
collar combination is perfect for every dog. Some dogs
will view harnesses as a challenge to pull. Others may
find a pincher collar to be too rough and painful. The
collar that is typically the best fit for your dog is
the one that provides the greatest amount of comfort
while still generating the intended responses.
6. Make sure your dog is wearing their tags. Even if you
have the best behaved dogs, weird things can happen. You
could be distracted and the dog may slip its leash
chasing after another animal or something of that ilk.
Make sure it is wearing its vaccination and
identification tags to ensure the highest probability of
its safe and timely return.
7. Finally – have fun! The walk is a good opportunity
for you and your pet to get exercise. It also represents
a great bonding experience with your four legged best
friend. They will appreciate it more than you will ever