Importance Of Walking Your Dog / Puppy

Why is walking your dog an essential part of your dog’s life?

Okay, so we all know that taking our dogs out for the toilet is probably one of the biggest reasons, but what are some others?

1. Health Control

Helping to keep our dogs at the right weight for their breed is essential to their overall health. By having an overweight pooch, we are sadly lining them up to the possibility of health conditions and none of us want that for our furry friends. Alongside their weight we also have their joint health. Dogs get older and slow down, but we must remember that dogs of all ages need to keep moving to keep their joints in check. Older dogs will likely be slower and may only be able to do smaller walks compared to when they were younger. But hey, it happens to the best of us. Just keep an eye on your dog, you know them best and you can adjust the length of the walks that you both take.

2. Mental Wellbeing

Dogs, like humans, need stimulation. For a dog, a walk is a burst of scents stimulating their noses. They can taste lots of things like rain and grass (plus sadly some other disgusting things too that we do not want them to)! Being out and hearing the noises of the world that surround us and seeing a multitude of things that cannot be seen within our homes. Just think, if us humans was cooped up inside the same 4 walls with no interaction with the outside world, our mental health would be affected drastically. Dogs are social animals just like us.

3. Social Skills

Socialising with other dogs is also critical from a young age as dogs learn a lot from playing. I know my dog loves me and we have great fun on our walks, especially playing ball, but sometimes I am just not enough, and they need some canine companionship. Dog play can look very rough, so it is very important that your dog learns when to stop and calm down. The social skills learnt as a puppy while with older and younger dogs will set you and your pup up for success, for when you are out and about. What we, as responsible dog owners must always realise, is not all dogs are well behaved. Some dogs are on a leash for a reason, whether it be because they are aggressive, anxious or the owner is teaching the dog. Sometimes you need to read the situation and ask the owner of the other dog if your dog can approach.

4. Reduce Household damage

Without the proper physical and mental stimulation dogs can get rather destructive. No one wants to come home to find that their dog has started chewing on things like furniture, wallpaper and clothes, just naming a few things. This can become an extremely costly habit for your dog to pick up and yes, this is very frustrating to us humans but figuring out why your dog is doing this is key to breaking this habit. Taking your dog out is a great way to release some pent-up energy, as this can tire them out which makes them more relaxed and calmer once back in their home environment. I’ve always said that a tired pup from a walk is indeed a happy pup.

5. Routine

Keeping to a routine of when you take your dog out is ideal. Some dogs work better at going to the potty on a schedule and this can help to Keep your dog regular and not constipated. Also, we must remember that if a dog is holding urine in their bladder for long periods of time, then we are increasing the risk of them getting a urine infection.

6. Correct walks based on weather conditions

You must take into consideration the weather when walking your dogs. Some dogs do not want to go for long walks when it is raining, snowing or just too cold. Also, the same if it is too hot. If it is snowing, then please be careful with your dogs’ paws. Walking on snow and ice can lead to peeling or cracked paw pads which would be extremely painful for your dog.

Dogs who have a problem with walking in the rain could really benefit from a raincoat, some dogs just do not like to get wet.

When the warmer weather is here, we may want to bring our little furry friends outside with us to enjoy it. Please think before you do. Warm weather can really put your pooch in danger, following these simple steps can help. Try and walk your dog early in the morning and late at night. These are going to be the coolest time of the day to walk your dog.

Consider taking a shorter length walk, avoid playing games with your dog, avoid running and cycling, which could easily get them overheated.

  • Bring plenty of water, it is surprising how much a thirsty doggy can drink in the heat. Try and provide constant shade if possible and be wary of pavements.

  • Touch the pavement with your hands for a few seconds, if it is too hot for you then its too hot for your dog. The general rule for walking your dog in the summer is it is safe to walk your dog in up to 19 Celsius weather. When the mercury rises above this, then your dog getting heatstroke increases.

  • Your dog only has a few sweat glands in their paws and nose so we must be very careful. Knowing basic animal first aid would be extremely beneficial in this case.

Signs of heat stroke in a dog is:

· Panting, which increases as the heatstroke gets worse.

· Getting agitated and very restless

· Drooling

· Their heart rate increases

· Vomiting and/or diarrhoea

· Very red or pale gums

· Increase in heart rate and breathing distress

· Confusion in the dog

· Seizures

· No urine or very little urine

· Weakness

· Collapsing/lying down

· Muscle tremors

· Coma

If your dog is showing signs of these please take shelter and give your dog some water and allow for them to cool down before you continue your walk.

7. Benefits for us

Taking your dog out for a walk is also beneficial to us humans. Dog walking is a great way of not only keeping your dogs in good shape, but also helping us humans to keep in shape too.

We can help our cardiovascular fitness, gain stronger and bigger muscles, decreases stress and lowers your blood pressure. Alongside our health, dog walking can also help us create a stronger bond with our furry companions.

We are extremely fortunate that we live in South London, when it comes to outdoor areas, we certainly do have our pick. Finding places to walk and socialise our dogs has never been easier! Do not forget that if you are struggling to find the time to walk your dog, please consider a dog walker, like us, we cover the South Croydon area.

Here are some great places to walk your dogs in the Croydon area.

· Croham Hurst woods

· Addington hills

· South Croydon Recreation Park

· Lloyd’s park

· Wandle park

· Waddon Ponds

· Purley beeches

· Park Hill Park

· Selsdon Woods

· Purley way playing fields

· Duppas Hill Park

· Foxley woods in Purley

· Rotary fields in Purley

· Kenley Common

· Addington Park

· Ashburton playing fields

· Beddington park

· Haling Grove Park

I certainly hope that this blog has given you some more in depth information, as to why walking our dogs is extremely important to them and us.

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