Walking Your Dog Safely

For a healthy dog, going for walks can be one of the best things for prolonged health for your companion, not to mention yourself! Few other activities bring relaxation and calmness like an after-work walking with your dog, or perhaps on a weekend afternoon.

There are however some precautions that you should take as an owner that seems to ignored by too many owners, though they don’t intend to do any wrong. With my dog, I always make it a point to come prepared with some materials, as well as make sure the environment is safe, and sharing some of that could be worthwhile to you.

1.Take Some Water

no matter what the temperature is, a dog can quickly find the need to have some water. Make sure that you bring some sort of receptacle that can hold it as well if you don’t want to use your hand. Plenty of stores sell collapsable bowls or cups that are perfect when you don’t want to carry big materials on your body during the walk.

2. Please, Bring a Bag

I feel like this doesn’t have to be mentioned, but I unfortunately tend to find many dropping left on streets and sidewalks by inconsiderate owners. Do us all a favor and clean up after your dog. The walking speeds up your dogs metabolism, and there is a great change that he/she will have to do the deed along the way. Not only is it rude, but very unsanitary and poses as a health hazard for other residents.

3. Stick to Sidewalks/Avoid Roads

This can be a little difficult if you live ina neighborhood that doesn’t have a sidewalk, but it’s definitely a much better idea for you to walk your dog on a safe path. If where you live doesn’t have a sidewalk, consider taking your dog to a friendly park where the walk can be done safely. Plenty of parks have walking paths that are meant for dog walkers, so see what is around you. If you really must walk on the road, approach with heavy caution, and keep the leash short.

4. Consider A Body Harness 

We’ve all experienced it one time or another while walking our dogs. They see a squirrel or another dog and their excitement is overwhelming. When they start pulling on the leash that’s around their neck, you obviously know of the potential injury and dangers that can happen to them. That’s why body harness leashes are much safer, and provide more support for when the pull happens. Though they cost a bit more than the simple neck leash, the investment is worth it.

5. Say No To Extreme Temperatures

I get irate when I see people in my neighborhood walking their dogs in 90+ degree heat. Not only is the hot surface unpleasant for their paws, but the heat is extremely dangerous. Dogs don’t sweat like we do, and when that gets combined with their hair, it’s a miserable experience. If it’s too hot, save the walk. The same thing can be applied to cold temperatures as well. Sunrise or sunset walks are certainly the best way to go.

By: Doug Glaston
Doug is a big dog lover and writes content for animal channels on Direct2TV and others.
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