Apart from the regular visit to the veterinary clinic, dog grooming and investing in the best dog food, our pets also need physical activity. Most dog owners already know that they should walk their dog regularly, but not everyone does. Some survey studies have even reported that in some areas over 50% of dog owners do not walk their dogs on a regular basis.
Ultimately, all dogs have different needs when it comes to activity. Some hardly need any exercise, while others need to be exercised daily to keep them healthy and give them an outlet for their energy. There are a number of ways to keep your dog healthy and active – but simply taking your dog for a walk is undoubtedly the best thing you can do together. Here are seven reasons why walking your dog is the best thing you can do for him/her:
1. Most active dogs LOVE walks.
Whatever you choose to do with your dog, presumably the hope is that both of you enjoy the experience. In our house, the word “walk” is the only word that gets them more excited than “breakfast,” “dinner,” or “treat.” Right when the word is uttered, both are sprinting to the counter where their leashes are kept in anticipation of even just a quick walk around the block.
2. Walks are a way to bond with your pup
Any time spent one-on-one with your dog is time well spent, and walks can be an enjoyable experience for both of you! Building a strong bond with your pup is beneficial for both you and your pup long-term- these bonds are believed to not only create a better-behaved dog, but also create more emotional and psychological stability for humans.
3. Walks offer the opportunity to explore new and unique places
We love driving to Minnesota State Parks and taking our dogs on walks there – we love being outdoors, and it allows our dogs to explore a whole new environment. Just make sure if you do take your dog to a public park to abide by all park laws and regulations.
4. Walks keep both you and your dog active
Obesity is a common health concern for both humans and dogs. Walking your dog once a day for 30 minutes 3-4 times a week is a great way to keep you and your dog healthy (in addition to a healthy diet).
5. Walks are safe for dogs
One of the most popular places for dogs to release pent-up energy is the dog park. However, dog parks can be unsafe, depending on the other dogs present in the park, and not having full control of your dog can result in injury. Some dogs inexplicably don’t get along, and you may not realize that another dog in the park is reactive until it is too late. In more recent years, being able to do veterinarian clinic visits via chat right from the park has made accidents fewer and safer overall. If you take your dog for a walk instead, you allow the dog to explore its environment while remaining under full control.
6. Walks provide necessary mental stimulation for your dog
Dogs are constantly taking in the scents of their surroundings, and each walk exposes them to different scents and surroundings to process. This stimulation works their minds in addition to their bodies.
7. Walks are inexpensive
Typically all you need to take your dog for a walk is a six foot leash- making it one of the least expensive activities you can partake in. We also take obedience, agility, rally, barn hunt, and dock diving classes with our dogs, but these all come at varying costs. Walks are essentially free!
If you are a dog owner, taking your dog for a walk is the easiest way to get them the physical and mental exercise they need and love, while creating an unbreakable bond! And even better, you can do so at a low cost, while exploring the world around you. Whether it be city blocks or hiking out in the wilderness, both you and your dog are bound to enjoy the experience.