Walking your dog is hugely stimulating for both dog and owner. It burns off excess energy leaving your dog relaxed and happy for the day ahead. It’s also a great way for both of you to keep fit!
What’s the Best Type of Leash
Flexi-leads: These are best reserved for walks in the countryside or park, when it’s safe for a dog to have a little more freedom to explore. They are also very useful for dogs who do not have a solid recall or puppies who are still too young to be let off the lead. They are NOT a good idea if you are walking in an area with a lot of pedestrians, cyclists or many other off-leash dogs, as the long line may get wrapped around your dog, a person’s leg or another dog! These leads are not best used to teach dogs how to walk to heel, they tend to encourage dogs to pull forward to release the flexi-leash, therefore causing inconsistency in training the dog to stay by your side.
Chain leads: These are much heavier than nylon or leather leashes and they can be very hard on the hands. However, they sometimes work well for dogs who like to tug or bite at the leash as metal doesn’t feel nearly as nice in the dog’s mouth as a nylon or leather leash. Lastly, the dog will not be able to bite through it like other leashes often saving their owners money!
Leather or nylon leads: These are a good option because they are easiest on the hands. They come in many stylish colours and designs and they hold up well after repeated exposure to rain and snow.
Harness and Head Halters: These are a good option if your dog pulls a lot on the leash, you may consider wearing a head halter such as “The Gentle Leader” by Premier or an anti pull harness such as the “Perfect Fit Harness” by Dog-Games.
What to Bring With You
Water: If you’re planning an extended walk, be sure to bring water for your dog – especially if it’s warm outside. Dogs can get very dehydrated and overheated as they cannot sweat like us humans. It is important that they are offered water at regular intervals during your walk.
Treats: Don’t forget the treats! Walks are great training opportunities, so bring your dog’s favourite treats along on the walk and practice obedience commands and recalls while you’re in unfamiliar places. This helps consolidate your dog’s commands, enabling you to have better control over him/her in uncertain situations. It is also hugely bonding for the dog and owner and really makes his/her walks fun!
Toys: Some dogs just like to enjoy a walk and the sniffing and greeting opportunities that a walk always brings. But others like some action! If your dog loves to chase balls, sticks or a frisbee, remember to bring these along with you on your walk, so that your dog can have an opportunity to play some of his/her favourite games with you.
Poo Bags: Remember to bring enough poo bags to last you the whole walk and make sure you clean up after your dog so that other people can enjoy their walk too!
Make sure your dog is wearing a collar with an identification tag in case he/she gets lost. All dogs should be microchipped and this will be compulsory from April 2016. Keep your dog on a leash when you are by a busy road. Even unleashed well trained dogs can have a lapse of concentration and take off across a busy road in pursuit of a squirrel! Always bear in mind that if your dog is off leash, accidents can happen! Take a mobile phone with you, especially if you are walking in deserted areas in case you fall and injure yourself or your dog has an accident. Lastly, it’s always best to gain control over your dog around livestock and horses, either by leashing up or moving away to another area. A horse’s kick can kill or seriously injure a dog and farmers will take action if a dog is chasing their livestock!
To follow up or make an appointment or find out more information about Ringwood Dogs, Ashley Heath on the Hampshire and Dorset border, please contact Isabelle Adams-Papé by clicking on the Contact Me tab.
I look forward to meeting you and working with your dogs.
Happy dog training.