January Is Walk Your Dog Month

At Brookside Barkery, we believe in doing what is best for your best friend! Walks are part of your pet’s overall health and provide many long-lasting benefits for the both of you. In honor of walk your dog month, here are some tips for a safe, healthy, and fun outing with your pup.

  • Be the pack leader. It is important to be in charge when you walk your dog. Use confident body language and don’t let your dog walk in front of you. Your dog should be next to you or slightly behind you. Don’t wait until your dog pulls ahead of you, reinforce his/her good behavior with treats along the way.
  • Practice leash lessons. Many of us live in cities or neighborhoods where a leash is a necessity. Stop in the Barkery at Brookside or Lee’s Summit and ask an associate which leash is best for your pet. You should get a leash that is comfortable for you to hold, and one that is short but not too tight. This will encourage your pet to be comfortable at your side without wandering and you will be able to maintain control. Until your dog knows how to walk without pulling, view your walks as training sessions, and keep them short, frequent, and low stress.
  • Bring the necessities. Be prepared on your walk to make it pleasant for you and your dog. Always carry bags for cleaning up and disposing of doggie poop. Don’t forget to hydrate! Don’t forget to carry water for yourself and for your dog, especially during warmer weather. And last but not least, bring treats for your best friend to give rewards for good behavior on the walk.
  • Change it up. Don’t take your dog on the same path all the time. Give your dog some adventure by taking a different route or walking to a different location, such as the dog park or a friends house (preferably a dog owner!). You can also try walking with a buddy or bringing along a friend’s dog.
  • Know how far to go. Healthypet.com says that every dog’s exercise needs are different. Factors to consider are the size of your dog, the length of its legs, breed, age, general health, and the walking environment and temperature. Watch your dog while you walk. If your dog starts slowing down or panting heavily, it is time to stop.
  • Enjoy your walk with your best friend. You’ll be glad you took the time to bond with your pet. Remember – you are providing an outlet for your dog’s energy while at the same time creating a more confident and stable dog!