Size counts. When it comes to determining how often and how long you should walk your pet, take his size into consideration. Young and active breeds, such as collies, corgis and terriers, could easily do two 30- to 60-minute walks every day if they lack large areas to run around in at home. However, smaller and older dogs are better off with one 20-minute walk and some play time at home.
Timing is everything. When walking your pet, it is important to pick a time of day that works for you and your pet. If you are pet walking in your neighborhood, try to walk when some of your neighbors and their pets are out to improve your dog’s or cat's social abilities.
Develop a routine. Pets love routines, so once you determine a time that works and a length that is suitable for your pet, try to stick to that time and length at least five days a week. The routine will help your pet be less anxious on walks.
Take charge! Using a leash, harness and consistent verbal commands will make your walks go smoothly. Commands like "stop" (at street corners) and "leave it" (to stop them from bringing home souvenirs) will help keep your dog in control and safe.
Stay hydrated. Whether you are walking a cat or a dog, in cool or warm weather, carry a small water bottle and a reusable pop-open water bowl for your pet. Have him drink water before the walk and stop for water breaks during your walk as well. Let your pet inform you as to how often they need a break. If you see him slowing down or panting heavily, it may be time to rehydrate. On hotter days, it may be best to stick to early morning walks so your pet doesn't overheat.
Be flexible. The more you walk with your pet, the better he will become. As his behavior improves, add an extra walk here and there, or add on some extra minutes. However, if your pet starts to limp or isn't feeling well, shorten the walks or slow them down until he recovers.
Every pet has unique needs. These tips will help you develop a perfect pet walking routine that works for you and your pet.
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