Dog Walking Dos and Don’ts

three dog walk

Walking a dog is easy peasy, right? Not always, and it’s not as simple of a task as people seem to think.

While dog-walking is our specialty and we love to help clients out with their dog-walking needs, we certainly encourage you to walk your own dog as much as possible, if you are able. There are so many benefits to both you and your dog, plus, a little exercise and fresh air is always a good thing! But, to keep both you and your furry companion safe and happy while out on your walks, there are a few definite “dos” and “don’ts” that we’ve learned over the past few years and we’d like to share them with you:

DO walk your dog as often as you can. It’s so beneficial to his/her health and serves as wonderful bonding time between the two of you.

DO always keep an ID tag on your pet at all times while outside.

DO let your dog be a dog on walks. This doesn’t mean they should have full control of their walk, but they should be given the chance to sniff, stretch, roll in the grass and say hello to other dogs (with the permission of the other dogs’ owners, first) if they’d like.

DO change up your walking route often. Like us, dogs can get bored seeing the same sights each day. Change up their surroundings once in a while to keep things fresh and exciting for them.

DO check your pet over before and after their walk. Before heading out, be sure that your dog is looking and acting normally. After walking, check them over again and also check the paws and fur for foreign debris that could cause pain or injury. Don’t forget to check for ticks, as well.

DO pay attention to the weather. If it’s excessively hot or cold or if there are thunderstorms in the forecast, maybe it’s best to forego Fido’s walk for the day. Try a different time of day or hold off until another day. It’s better to be safe rather than sorry in extreme weather.

DO pick up after your dog. Always!

DO use proper equipment. This means a sturdy leash and a properly-fitted collar or harness.

DO pay attention to your surroundings. Always be on the lookout for potential hazards to you and/or your dogs.

DO have emergency numbers saved in your phone and always have a first-aid kit in an accessible location. You never know when an emergency may happen.

DON’T walk your dog on hot pavement or cement. Their foot pads are sensitive to temperature and can burn on hot surfaces. Wait until a cooler time of day to head out for your walk or invest in some booties to protect your pal’s feet. Remember, icy surfaces can be just as harmful to your dog’s feet.

DON’T approach strange dogs without permission of the other dog’s owner. Not all dogs are mannerly or friendly with unfamiliar dogs and skirmishes can be easily avoided by allowing pets to have their space when they need it.

DON’T let your dog off his/her leash. While outside, dogs should be leashed at all times to avoid potential problems or injuries to themselves, other dogs or humans. The only exception to this rule should be in an enclosed dog park where off-leash play is welcomed. Even then, pets should be supervised at all times.

DON’T forget to hydrate — both yourself and your pet!

So there you have ’em — some tricks of the trade, if you will, to make your dog-walking experiences a success!

Do you regularly walk your dog? What points would you add to this list?

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