Dogs need a lot of exercise, and some breeds need more than others. Walking your dog on a regular basis is good for the both of you to get the exercise that you need. It may sound simple, just leash up your dog(s) and start walking, but there are precautions that you should take to keep you and your dog safe.
Whether you are a fast walker or prefer to take a nice, leisurely stroll, having the right clothes, and a few tips will help you do it safely and make it a fun experience. A little effort, in the beginning, will make all the difference.
1). Wear the right gear. Wear shoes that are comfortable and fit well in case your dog starts to pull or chase something. Tennis or lace up shoes are the best. Wear a bright sweater or coat to make sure cars and other vehicles can see you – especially when you are crossing the street. Wear or bring a rain cover for you and your dog in case it starts to rain. The worst thing is to be halfway through your walk and it starts to rain, and you and your dog gets wet.
2). Walking at night. Make sure you and your dog are visible by using reflectors or lights. Especially dogs, drivers become less likely to see your pooch at dusk or in the night. Use a reflective vest for you and a reflective collar for your pooch. Do not forget to bring a flashlight or a headlamp for better visibility as you walk. Potholes and other items in your path are hard to see at night.
3). Walk your dog on the correct side. When walking, keep your dog on your left side as you are much more visible to a driver then your dog. It will also reduce the possibility of him/her running after a squirrel, cat or another dog and having him on your left will help keep them from running directly into traffic.
4). Use the proper collar. A dog harness might work well for a small dog, but a larger and stronger dog might need a gentle head halter to give more control as you walk as they reduce your dog’s power to pull. There are a few that are recommended by shelters, such as a Gentle Leader or a Halti Head Collar. They are much better then choke or prong collars, as the potential for pain and injury is much greater using these types of collars. You should know your dog and know your own limitations on controlling a larger dog.
K9 of Mine website has a great article on the best no pull harnesses for dogs. Check it out here.
Even the most prepared pet owner can have mishaps and things can go wrong, but if you use the right equipment and are prepared it may reduce the problem if any arises.
If you do not have time to walk your dog, there are plenty of companies that can do the dog walking for you. Contact us and let us do the walking for you.