What dogs that dog walk every day get out of it
dog walking daily benefitIt is far too easy to claim physical and mental benefits from daily off lead dog walking. Its proven, obvious and any owner who does it has a much happier life. but what else does the dog get?
Very few people walk their dog off lead every day, let alone walk them twice or more. Then exceptional people who cant do this employ other people called professional dog walkers to do this for them.
You might think this is just a guilt thing, or people with too much money, but you would be 100% wrong.
I can easily tell you what ever dog I walk in my pack gets from the walk, and that is just the tip of the iceberg, but I thought I would let you in on the secret of Amy shown here with my dog Archie.
Amy was walked from a very young age off lead by myself and her owners.
Her breed is bernese mountain dog and these are strong dogs with moderately low endurance in hot conditions such as Australia (compared with Switzerland where they are much more active with their double coats). They are typically a very puppy like dog (neoteny) and also quite a shy and potentially insecure dog. NOT all of them, but I have seen this trait in many of them, a heightened sensitivity well beyond what their size might suggest.
Amy is one such type of sensitive dog among her breed. She has had no obvious attacks to be traumatised or shy or scared of anything, but on every walk she likes to stay just a little away from the pack, interact only on her terms.
Dog walking turns shy dogs into fun dogsAmy likes nothing better than to romp after my dog, the spoodle shown in this blogs photo, because she knows Archie well and that he is very social and not a threat. To her she can fully express herself in front of him. And that is the secret to overcoming dog shyness (distraction and just doing). The whole pack I walk is social, so that helps her daily to overcome the shyness and anxiety. In a dog her sized. if not walked daily w, she would most likely end up unmanageable. She would most likely suffer extreme separation anxiety without being tired out from the walks, and she would attract unwanted attention in the park with her more awkward social skills and hiding, if she was not walked daily.
Other people who do not walk their dogs regularly often find their dogs have a few anti-social behaviours they have to explain away as - my dog doesn't like this and that, or you better not approach my dog, or my dog hates these breeds of dogs.
A social dog is only social by continued practice off lead in a dog park. They only become an ideal dog through learning what is acceptable day after day after day. DOGS are not born social, nor do they stay social without regular off lead walks.
This is a rare shot of Amy on the chair, as while she knows she will get a treat if she gets on the bench chair, and while I offer her to jump up before all of the other dogs, her shyness usually prohibits this. Today we had a few dogs on holiday, so Amy only had to only 'compete' against Archie for the chair. What you can't see in s still shot is that she got up first on the left side of the chair, then when Archie jumped up she moved over to him and licked him and playfully harassed him. She got over her shyness with him (in the moment).
THESE are some of the small 'miracles' that happen daily to just one big friendly 'social dog I know ...