Have fun walking dogs? Here are a few things to keep in mind

Long walks are truly satisfying and stress busting when you walk in the company of a pet by your side. The best part about that is dogs enjoy their time in the outside world and their much-needed exercise time. Although joyous, it comes with its fair share of responsibilities. 

There are a few pointers that need to be kept in mind in order to ensure that nothing goes wrong.

  1. Do not use a retractable leash, this can make it harder to control your dog. Additionally, it can also turn out to be a frustrating ordeal for both of you
  2. Do not let the dog off the leash under any circumstances.
  3. Do not let the dog eat random plants on the way during the walk as one can never be sure if they are safe foods for dogs

What you should do:

  1. Make sure you call the dog towards you while taking them for a walk so you are established as the leader. Additionally, making the dog walk right next to you also establishes you as the leader. You can walk the dog next to you by holding the leash by both hands and not giving any extra leash length than required.
  2. Always keep water with you especially during hot months, since they might naturally tend to feel thirsty during long walks.
  3. Always carry dog waste or poop bag carriers so the roads are not littered while the dog takes their essential potty breaks

If you want to introduce them to other dogs:
As a dog walker, you might want the dog to make some new friends. As much as it is a fun way of socializing and spending more time walking dogs, it needs to be done carefully with several factors kept in mind.

What you should not do:

  1. Do not try to introduce dogs during the walk without making sure both the owner and dog are comfortable. Additionally, keep leash control for the initial moments till the behavior can be seen as friendly.
  2. Do not take more than one dog for a walk unless you are physically strong enough to handle them and have the right kind of experience handling dogs on leash. They can respond differently to testing situations, making it difficult to handle. They need a confident leader at all times.
  3. Do not assume that the dog is going to be friendly by past experiences alone. Dogs like us have varied personalities. You must approach after seeing the way it reacts to your presence. Each dog might invoke a different reaction. Let it get comfortable seeing you in its comfort zone. Allow them to make the first approach.

  What you should do:

  1. Look for the signs and body language of the dog you are walking. Determine whether it is comfortable and not alarmed, distracted or scared by the activities taking place in the  surroundings.
  2. Make sure that the dog(s) are not displaying signs of whale eye (showing the whites of their eye when uncomfortable) or standing stiff and upright (freezing when they are scared and want to run or fight).
  3. If two dogs are greeting each other by approaching each other in a semi-circular motion, it is a good sign. Additionally, if they are showing clear signs of happiness like happy eyes and wagging tails, then it is safe to introduce.

Dog walking can be a totally fun and fulfilling experience if it is done the right way

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