Walking your dog can be a fun experience for both of you, but sometimes things do not go as planned.
With the uncontrollable nature of the outside world, there are many things that can mess up your experience. Luckily, there are several steps you can take to help your walks go smoothly.
This is the most important thing you can to do keep your dog safe. Even the most-well-trained dogs can be enticed into a chase by squirrels, or get excited and dart across the road.
Keeping them leashed ensures that they are safely under control. Along with protecting your dog, leashing up safeguards wildlife against being chased and potentially injured by over-excited loose dogs.
It is also against the law in many places to have your dog loose in public. If you want off-leash time for your dog, then you can look for dog parks in your area. With so many people sharing their homes with dogs, off-leash parks have become very common.
The type of leash you use also matters. Retractable leashes hold hidden hazards that many people are not aware of. Their extending length still allows dogs to run out into the road before you can react, just like if they were not leashed at all.
The long, thin cord can also lead to you or your dog getting badly tangled. That can cause cuts from the cord. Most dogs do best with a standard leash of about 6 feet in length.
The time you and your dog spend together on walks can bring you closer together, but not if you spend the whole time on your phone. Not only does that keep you from bonding with your dog, it can also be dangerous.
Things can happen very quickly, so it is important to stay focused and pay attention to what is going on around you. A child might come up behind you and grab your dog’s tail, or there might be off-leash and less-than-friendly dogs heading your way. It is important to notice these things so you can deal with them before they cause a problem.
Watch the Weather
Bad weather can quickly ruin a pleasant walk. Check the forecast before you head out and keep an eye on the sky so you know if there are storms on their way. Heat can also be a big problem. Sun-soaked pavement can damage your dog’s paws. If it is hot outside, then try placing your hand on the pavement.
If you cannot comfortably hold it there for 10 seconds, it is too hot for your dog to be walking on it. Keep walks in hot weather short to avoid heat exhaustion, and bring plenty of water for you and your dog.
Make sure that drivers can see you if you are walking across roads. Carry a light and wear reflective gear at night so that you stand out in the dark. Bright colors can make you more noticeable during the day. Always check the road carefully before crossing, regardless of what you are wearing.
Taking these simple precautions can make your dog walking experience both safe and enjoyable.