Before you buy a dog you will have no doubt already done your research on what is going to be required of you. The time commitment needed to train your new puppy, the cost of pooch’s food, the regular brushing, the vet bills (or the sourcing of natural remedies) for if your dog gets sick. The list goes on. But one thing that many people overlook when they bring a new dog into their life is the joy of dog walking.
Why Dog Walking May Change Your Life. (And Keep Doggy Happy)
We are so lucky in New Zealand, it is a dog-friendly country with miles of beaches and open spaces where we can walk our dogs. Even dog-friendly accommodations offer wide open spaces to walk your dog.
Depending on the breed of dog, the minimum walking requirements for a healthy dog is thirty minutes, five times a week. We own a labrador cross mastiff and she would walk five times a day if she could, as I said, it depends on the breed.
A dog walking session can be anything from a stroll in the park to a full-blown romp across fields and woodland; depending on your’s and your dog’s level of fitness and capabilities.
If you are a solo dog owner and would like a friend or companion to join you on your dog walking sessions, why not join a local dog walking circle. Find a dog walking group to join near you.
Benefits Of Dog Walking For You And Your Dog
There are lots of reasons why dog walking is excellent for your life and health.
- Studies have shown that just thirty minutes of moderate walking can help to improve your cardiovascular fitness, lower blood pressure and build up stronger muscles and bones.
- Walking in the fresh air is also a tonic for decreasing stress and making us smile.
- Dog walking will strengthen the bond between you and your dog. Walk time is crucial for your dog’s behavioural development and spending regular one on one time with your pooch promotes trust.
- Dog walkers are regarded by others as being friendly and approachable. There is more chance of a stranger approaching you for a chat if you have a dog with you than if you were alone.
- Dog walking can reduce feelings of depression and loneliness.
- Dog walking is free! Is there anything better than that?!
- Obesity in pets is associated with a number of medical complaints including osteoarthritis, cardiovascular disease, liver disease and insulin resistance. Regular walks will help to alleviate such problems in your dog’s life.
- Dog walking teaches important social skills to your dog, crucial if you wish to leave your dog in the care of a sitter.
So what are you waiting for? Go out walking with your dog today. But before you get your lead and head off out, here are a few things to remember.
Things To Remember Before You Set Off On Your Dog Walk
If you are not used to walking, take things easy at first. Do some gentle stretches and ensure that you have some comfortable walking shoes. Take some water with you if it is a hot day.
Don’t forget the doggy poo bags!
If it is hot, choose the cooler part of the day to walk or find somewhere shady.
Always tell someone where you are going, especially if you know there is no cell phone signal.
Keep your dog on a leash in public areas and remember to abide by NZ dog laws.
That should set you up to go walking with your dog. Rember the benefits of dog walking and think of these if it is a drizzly, wet day!