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Walking the dog so it’s fun!

Dog walking or dog running is as much a chore for me as it is anyone else. I’m often tired or it’s cold or snowing or whatever. And walking is often boring.

But guess what? If I’m bored, my dog just might find me a bit boring.

Here’s an example of the walk Ace and I took Sunday night that was far from boring. We incorporated exercise, training and play:

1. Started out through the front door as usual.

2. Went left instead of right (We always go right).

3. Walked down a busier street, through a different parking lot and approached the park from a new angle.

4. Put Ace in a sit, unclipped his leash and sent him to pick up a plastic bottle using the command “Get it!”

5. Worked on heeling off leash around the park while Ace carried his prize.

6. Worked on teaching Ace “hold” and “give,” possibly for use during future pheasant hunting.

7. Doggie bathroom break.

8. Put Ace in a sit and walked 20 yards or so to the Dumpster and back.

9. Released Ace, sent him to get the bottle again.

10. Worked on sit-stays with a lot of distance (20 to 30 yards), dropping the bottle between us, doing a combined “Get it!” with a recall.

11. Walked to playground.

12. Practiced some calm “agility” by sending Ace over the swings, up the ladders and down the slides.

13. Put Ace in a heel-sit and then sent him after the bottle 20 yards out or so.

14. Reviewed “hold” and “give.”

15. Practiced more off-leash heeling all the way home while Ace carried his bottle.

16. Had Ace “drop” the bottle into our recycling bin. What a good citizen!

17. Put Ace in a sit at the door and then released him. Good boy!

Total walk time was about 30 minutes. Ace came home tired, and I felt like the coolest owner/trainer ever with the best dog in the world. Beats the usual walk. He even got to do some retrieving, and I didn’t throw a single object. He did not slip into an obsessive state of mind once.

Post an example of a fun walk with your dog below. Ace and I will give it a try!

Neighborhood dog walker : Animal Rights Day – Pets & Animals Blog, Articles, News and More

Sunday 1st of August 2010

[...] didn’t think of it before, but one day about six months ago I decided that I was going to start a dog-walking business. Plenty of my neighbors lined up and I got to spend some quality time with some bored dogs [...]

Lindsay Stordahl

Sunday 2nd of May 2010

Exactly. And even if the dog isn't bored with the usual walk, a new route is still going to be a lot more fun for the dog!

NK Dog Walking

Sunday 2nd of May 2010

You have a wonderful dog blog here, Lindsay. I read a book called "Bones Would Rain From The Sky" by Suzanne Clothier and she discusses this topic in her book too. She says even her pigs get bored from the same walk! I think the most important point is to simply vary the dog walking. Go in one direction instead of the other. Let's face it, not all of us are going to have high energy dogs who are interested in a lot of training. A simple variance in the walk will do for most dogs. Those of you with high energy dogs like Ace, these tips will work great.

Lindsay Stordahl

Monday 26th of April 2010

Ace has quite the nose on him as well. I can only imagine what it's like to walk with Gus and his nose!


Monday 26th of April 2010

Gus makes plenty of stops and has a blast when he walks...sniff, sniff, here - freak out about a squirrel there...