“Going on daily walks can have amazing benefits for both you and your dog. Regardless of size or breed, every dog requires daily exercise to stay healthy. Their human owners also require activity to maintain physical and mental health. Walking is a win-win solution for the dog-owner connection.” – Sitstaygoco
Walking your dog has numerous benefits that can’t be denied. With just a random search on Google, there has been little to none disadvantage about walking your dog. Walking helps to stimulate your dog’s mind, body and soul. Walking your dog properly, helps in your relationship with your dog and helps to enhance your dog’s mental and physical exposure.What do we mean by a proper walk and a good walk? When your dog is not pulling you left and right, and when you are not having to constantly tug or drag your dog. When your dog and you are both relaxed, enjoying the environment, enjoying the walk, in sync with each other. When your dog is focused on enjoying the walk rather than having it’s nose stuck to the ground, charging somewhere else. Heeling is something that we do, but often is it not absolutely necessary. Heeling looks good on the outside, it makes the human look good and it gives the dog a job, it is extremely useful for anxious and nervous dogs, heeling gives these dogs a sense of grounding and a job to do. Over time, heeling calms the dog down down and enhances it’s confidence. But all in all, heeling is not a must to have a good walk with your dog.
Walking your dog can cause harm when the dog is constantly pulling you. Harness is a tool that is developed for sled dogs, it is designed and meant for a dog to pull weight. It is only natural that when you put a harness of a dog, they start and learn to pull unless taught otherwise. The biggest difference between working dogs and pet dogs on a harness is that a working dog uses a harness to work, and most importantly, on a natural terrain such as snow, mud, natural ground, a pet dog does not. When you allow your dog to pull you vigorously to wherever it wants regardless of whether you are using a harness or a collar, you unknowingly create stress and impact on the joints. Most owners like us, walk our dogs on concrete ground. These surfaces do not give in to the dog’s joints, it puts unnecessary impact on the joints which can lead to many joint issues.
Dogs enjoy exploring, even more so on their four paws. Through walking, dogs get exposure to the world, the traffic, the surroundings, noises and much more. Positive associations to these exposures is only possible when the dog is relaxed, focused and enjoying on the walk. Constant pulling, sticking it’s nose to the ground or vigorously marking every area, is a form of obsession. It becomes a habit for the dog and an outlet for the dog. – outdoors equals to the dog’s outlet to releasing all the energy, habits, obsession in a very unhealthy manner.
When you spend time to teach your dog how to enjoy a walk, regardless of if your dog is heeling or simply enjoying the walk around you, you teach your dog how to be in different situations, you exposes your dog to healthy manners, you teach your dog how to control their emotions. Most importantly, you teach your dog how to enjoy being around you.