We all know that our dogs need lots of exercise for their health and happiness and, let’s be honest, it doesn’t hurt us owners to get out there and cover some miles too. Walking is one of the best forms of exercise if done regularly, it is gentle enough for most people to get involved with, and it can help our waistlines, our wellbeing and our mood.
We want to make walking the dog a great experience every time though, so here are some tips to get started:
Your dog has purpose-built paws for your jaunts together, but humans need to make sure that every step is taken in comfort. You can ensure this by wearing low heeled shoes that don’t rub and which give your feet plenty of room. For extra safety on all terrains it is wise to buy a nice pair of walking shoes. These will be a good investment, as they last for ages, are suitable for all weathers and are most importantly comfortable.
When you are out and about with your dog, be prepared. Bottled water is essential, a small snack for both of you is a good idea on shorter journeys and maybe lunch if you are making a day of it. If you are going further afield you may even want to consider carrying a travel first aid kit, for both you and your dog, in case any emergencies arise. In addition take your mobile phone with you so that you can always reach someone.
It’s not the nicest subject in the world, but it is vital to remember to take some doggy poop bags with you too. Remember what arrives with you, needs to leave with you, whether you take it home or find a dog waste-bin on your travels.
All of these items do add up, however, so it is a good idea to invest in a small backpack. There are even backpacks for dogs available now, so the larger canines can proudly carry their own supplies.
This is the UK, so we do need to be prepared for whatever the weather can throw at us and this will of course often mean rain. It’s always handy to have something warm that can protect you from the elements and waterproof jackets these days are usually small enough to be rolled up and put in your backpack or just light enough to carry on a shorter walk.
Also if it is very cold or wet you might also want to get a warm waterproof coat for your dog. He will definitely thank you for it.
Where To Go?
It is well worth doing research to see if there are some nice places to go with your dog in your local area. The park at the end of the road is fine most days, but sometimes it’s nice to go somewhere new and to let your dog enjoy all the sights, and more importantly smells, of the trail. It also gives you added motivation to walk more when you have new places to explore.
Google is your friend so have a look online and see what is available for you nearby. Sometimes you can even find some very cool special events, like the dog walking day that will be taking place at Hever Castle in Kent, on Sunday 27th April. This is a day with a difference, as not only can you walk your dog in the beautiful surroundings, but there is also a schedule of events planned, including dog displays, training tips and some family photography opportunities. If you are local to the area it is definitely worth checking out and while the event is free, the Dogs Trust will be there so you can donate to the great work that they do, and help some other less fortunate pooches than your own.
Wherever you walk with your dog this Spring and Summer, be prepared, be comfortable and most of all have fun.