dog walkIs your dog bored with the standard “walk to the park?” Are you reluctant to tread the same old path each and every day? It’s easy to get stuck in an exercise rut with your dog – and chances are that your dog is tired of the same old walk routine as well.

Daily exercise plays a key role in the lifelong health and happiness of all pets, and the daily walk is one of the best ways to keep your dog moving (it also offers important opportunities for socialization). Just because daily walks are routine, the OVRS staff doesn’t believe that your walks need to be dull! Here are ways to add a little pizazz to your dog walk to keep both you and your paw pal enthusiastic.

8 Ways to Energize Your Dog Walk

  1. Add activities. Taking a break to play a game of fetch or Frisbee is an excellent way to mix it up. You can also plan to meet other dog owners and their pets for a game – instant teammates!
  2. Invite a buddy. Many dogs enjoy the company of other canine peers so consider asking a friend or neighbor if they’d like to join you and your fur pal on a walk.
  3. Find a new walking route or park. The most obvious way to add interest to your dog’s daily walk is simply by exploring a new route. For added adventure, drive to a scenic walking path, natural area, or different neighborhood.
  4. Stop for breakfast. Many cafes and breakfast spots serve pet owner clientele by offering dog friendly patios. Swinging by for a latte with your pal can be a good way for both you and your dog to socialize while also getting in that important morning walk.
  5. Work on those skills. The dog walk is the perfect chance to bone up on basic commands, off leash training, and other types of training. If your dog already has the basics covered, you could try your hand at more complex tricks, such as “hold”, “roll over,” “shake,” and so on.
  6. Change up the pace. If your dog is less than inspired on his or her walk, it could be that you’re holding your pet back. Mix up the pace by switching from a steady walk to a jog, then a quick sprint, and then repeat these differences paces. If you’re already a runner, try tandem jogging with your energetic pup.
  7. Find an off leash area. Some dogs have had enough training to be ready for an off leash experience. If your dog is the sort who loves to run free, you may want to look into open areas that are suitable for off leash playtime or head to a favorite dog park.
  8. Remember to have fun. Last but not least, sometimes the problem isn’t about the walk itself, and has more to do with how we go about it. If you’re rushing through the walk, treating it like a chore or if you’re distracted on your phone, try to stop and focus on your pet and his or her  experience. Stop and smell the roses for a change!

Don’t forget: before you head out with your pet, make sure he or is current on all parasite preventives and vaccines.

Have fun on that walk!