Did you know that October 1-7 is Walk Your Dog Week? Fido probably doesn’t, but we’re guessing he’d be pretty enthusiastic about it if he did. Even if your canine pal has a yard to patrol, he’ll still benefit from regular walks. Getting out and about provides Fido with exercise and mental stimulation, both of which are great for him! Below, a Lakeville, MN vet talks about walking your canine buddy.
When walking your furry pal at night, you’ll want to take some extra precautions. Wear reflective gear, and get a nighttime leash that is easy to see. Keep a cell phone and spare keys with you at all times, and stick to familiar, well-lit paths. If you wear earbuds, keep the volume down, so you can hear what’s happening around you. And if you’re walking on the side of a road, keep Fido to the outside: he has a smaller profile, and will be harder for drivers to see.
Designate a specific jacket and set of sneakers for walking the pup. Keep a spare key, whistle, and some waste baggies in the jacket pockets. Also, clipping a carabiner onto Fido’s leash will make it easy to quickly attach him to a pole or tree. (Never leave your dog tied up unattended: this is just for your convenience if you want to make a call, sort through the mail, or stop and talk to someone.)
Proper training isn’t just about good doggy manners: it’s actually crucial to both Fido’s safety and the safety of people and other dogs. Make sure your pup knows basic doggy obedience commands, like Sit, Stay, Come, Lay Down, and Heel. If your dog seems to think that he’s walking you, you might want to look into obedience training.
Fido can burn his furry feet walking on hot tar or asphalt in summer. In winter, snow, ice, chemicals, salt, and sand can all hurt your four-legged pal’s paws. Keep your pooch on soft surfaces as much as possible, and use paw balm or wax to protect his feet. We also recommend using pet-friendly de-icing agents, and wiping your canine friend’s feet off with a damp cloth whenever you bring him inside.
Do you have questions about your dog’s health? Is Fido due for a veterinary exam? We can help! Contact us, your local Lakeville, MN hospital!