February 20th is Walk Your Dog Day! Even if your pooch has a yard to patrol, daily strolls will benefit him both mentally and physically. Of course, walking your dog can get a bit monotonous at times. Read on as a McHenry, IL vet lists some ways to make this more fun for both you and Fido.
It’s quite easy to change this classic child’s game into a dog-friendly one. When you’re walking your furry pal, suddenly change directions, and start going the other way. This will work best if you are in a fenced-in park, or using a retractable leash. When you start moving away from Fido, he’ll probably run after you. When he does, say ‘Come’ and give him a reward.
Red Light Green Light
You can put a pet-friendly twist on this classic childhood game by just changing out the traditional commands of ‘Stop’ and ‘Go.’ to ‘Stay’ and ‘Come’. This can be a fun way to reinforce Fido’s training!
Changing speeds is another cute way to teach your pup something new. It will also help turn your walk into more of a workout. This is a good one for very intelligent dogs that always want something to do.
Do you have a large yard? If so, you can make a doggy obstacle course. You can buy equipment for this, but you can also use things like picnic tables or large truck tires. If you enjoy this type of workout, then you and Fido can get fit together!
This one falls under advanced training, but it can come in handy sometimes, too. Teach your canine buddy to go from your right side to your left on command. This is a good way to distract him if you spot a cat or a squirrel!
Search For Treasure
Take some small treats with you. Pieces of kibble will work. Drop some on the ground now and then, when your pooch isn’t looking. Then, tell him to ‘Find the treat!’ Instant happy dog!
Another thing you can do is work on the Drop It command on your walk. This is actually a very useful command. You don’t want Fido eating things he finds on the ground, like that chicken leg someone discarded!
Please contact us, your McHenry, IL veterinary clinic, anytime. We’re here to help!