Going for a Walk
Taking your dog out for a walk is not always the ideal, leisurely, and enjoyable experience it has often been cracked up to be. Dog personalities differ, as much as moods and temperaments differ. Temperaments are even more pronounced with active and athletic dog breeds. Although most dogs would want an outside walk most of the time, there will be occasions when the dog would rather stay at home. Barring that the dog is ill; you could make every walk in the park as enjoyable an experience for both you and the dog.
Set the pace. Start slowly. Dogs will always be excited during their first time out. Dogs, especially when still untrained, gets easily distracted. It could be a squirrel, pigeons, other dogs, people, no matter; the dog’s attention has to be controlled.
During the initial walks outside, be mindful that the dog is naturally inclined to chase and play. It is often not recommendable to let the dog set the pace because more often than not, it is hard to keep up with them. The dog will pull and will try to run and just love to romp. It will exert pressure on the leash. This is the more reason why the dog will tire easy. Set the pace. A fifteen minutes walk will already be enough for the first time out.
This could be increased gradually but the dog should be allowed to rest whether it wants it or not. Another reason for this is because of the excitement, the dog will pull hard at the leash that could injure his neck. Even so, the dog will keep on tugging. When the dog is panting hard and the eyes are getting red, it is a sign that the dog is exerting too much pressure on his neck. Rest for a while. If the dog refuses, take him back to your yard to prevent injury.
On subsequent walks, if you notice that your dog gets very excited at the site of other dogs, cats, squirrels, rest, and sit for a while. Calm the dog down. When the dog has calmed, resume the walk. You may be doing this several times but eventually, the dog will catch on. When there is no place to sit, just stop walking. The dog will try to tug, get his attention and give the dog a treat or verbal assurances and resume walking.
If you have a particularly energetic pup like a boxer or a retriever, you may want to tire the pup first before introducing him outside. Highly energetic games, for example, a game of fetch, would be good to release extra energy, just do not play tug of war with the pup. Playing tug of war will teach your pup to compete with you. Introduce games where you are in control over the pups activities.
If you chose to adopt an energetic/athletic dog, chances are you are athletic as well and love the outdoors. If so, maintain a brisk pace once outside your yard with the puppy. This way, distractions are minimized and tugging at the leash will become less often.
If you enjoyed reading this article, you can subscribe to our articles and receive them in your email inbox. The subscription box is on the right sidebar.