A walk is probably one of your dog’s favorite times of the day, and we can see why! It’s a chance for them to get out and explore, stretch their legs, and have some fun. It’s also a chance for you to relax your mind and exercise your body. While this part of your routine may seem natural, there also might be some things that you’re getting wrong. Here are 9 of the most popular dog walking mistakes people make.
Letting Your Dog Lead
Letting your dog lead could make them think they’re in charge! Although they’re eager to be out and about, it’s a good idea to moderate them where necessary. Otherwise, the dynamic set up during your walks could filter into other parts of your relationship. To avoid this, adjust your dog’s leash so that you’re both walking alongside each other.
Too Short, Too Long
It’s all about striking that balance. If your dog is older or has health issues, they probably don’t need – and shouldn’t be – out for too long. If your dog is younger, healthy and energetic, they might spend a bit more time outside. It’s all about knowing your dog’s personality and needs.
Typically, a walk should last between 20 minutes and half an hour, and you should take your dog out at least twice a day. Adjust your walk time according to your dog’s behavior. If they regularly seem tired after a 30-minute walk, try for 20 minutes the next time.
Always Taking the Same Route
Walks are a chance for your dog to see the world. It can get boring if they have to take the same route every day! Shake up their routine once in a while and bring them for a walk in a new (and safe) place, so they can soak up fresh sights, sounds and smells. This also sharpens their mind.
Lack of Leash Control
Being too slack or too taut on the leash can end up hurting your dog. If your leash control has too much give, your dog can run off easily. On the other hand, holding the leash too tight can cause your dog discomfort.
Not Properly Measuring a Collar or Harness
This can lead to discomfort for your dog at best, and end up actually injuring them at worst. For smaller dogs, we recommend a harness – they put less pressure on the airway without you needing to compromise control on the leash. Read up about how to measure your dog for a harness!
Letting Your Dog Bite Their Leash
This is more than just harmless nibbling or naughty behavior – many dog leashes have metal components that can harm your dog’s teeth. This behavior can also wear out your leash quickly. If you find your dog is constantly needing a nibble, bring along a favorite chew toy for them instead.
Not Picking Up After Your Dog