National Walk Your Dog Month: Tips for Walking Your Dog

tips for walking your dog

January is National Walk Your Dog Month! What better way to kick start your New Years Resolution by going outdoors to walk off some of that holiday food? There are numerous health benefits of walking for both you and your dog, which makes this a great way to start your new year. We have put together a few tips for walking your dog.

Tips for Walking Your Dog

Avoid Retractable Dog Leashes

tips for walking your dog - retractable dog leash

Avoid using retractable dog leashes when possible. These can cause many unnecessary hazards in comparison to traditional leashes. Retractable leashes can cause injuries to both dogs and humans.

Due to the length of most retractable leashes, it can be difficult for you to maintain control of your dog, particularly in high traffic areas. Also, while retractable leashes have locks, they are known to disengage with enough pressure.

Let Your Dog Sniff Around

tips for walking your dog - dog sniffing

Walking your dog is much more than just physical exercise. Typically, your dog’s walk is the only time they get out and explore each day. These smells provide your dog with stimulation and information. It is your pet’s way of keeping track of what is going on in the neighborhood.

If you don’t want to stop every 5 seconds or have your dog sniffing around in your neighbors yard that’s fine. You can decide which areas are safe and appropriate for your pet to explore.

Always Pick Up Your Dog’s Poop

Another one of many tips for walking your dog is to always pick up your dog’s poop. Not picking up dog poop can cause major health concerns to humans and pets alike. Pet waste may contain harmful organisms that can spread to other animals and humans.

Picking up your dog’s poop isn’t glamorous, but it’s part of being a responsible pet owner. You can find poop bags at many grocery stores and pet stores, and they are extremely easy to carry.

Bring Water on Longer Walks

tips for walking your dog - water

If you will be walking for more than a half hour, make sure to keep your dog hydrated by bringing plenty of water. Dogs have a harder time regulating their body temperature than humans do, so it easy for them to overheat.

Collapsible water bottles are available at pet stores or you can use a container of your own.

Make Sure Your Dog Wears Proper Identification

tips for walking your dog - identification

Make sure your dog is wearing up-to-date ID tags every time you leave the house. Unfortunately, dogs can sometimes break their leash and get loose.

Getting your pet microchip can also be beneficial in case your dog gets lost. As long as your information is current, anyone who scans your dog for a chip can get in touch with you.

Check for Hot Pavement

tips for walking your dog - hot pavement on dog paws

Hot pavement can cause serious injuries to your pup’s paws. You can determine if the pavement is too hot for your dog simply by placing your hand or barefoot on the pavement for 5 seconds. If it is too hot or uncomfortable for your skin, then it is too hot for your dog’s feet.

On those really hot Texas summer days, consider taking your dog for a walk in the grass or go to the local dog park. Also, you can walk earlier in the morning or take an evening stroll to avoid the sun.

Ask Before Approaching Other Dogs

While your dog may be friendly, this doesn’t mean every dog to dog meeting will be pleasant. There’s many dogs that don’t do well with on leash greetings.

You can avoid any unnecessary risk by asking before letting your dog approach another dog.

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