8 Dog Walking Mistakes You Are Making

Updated: May 15, 2024

Dog walking may seem second nature to us pet parents. You may be wondering, what could go wrong with such a basic task? These are 8 common dog walking mistakes, see if you are making any!

Dog Walking Mistakes
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Dog Walking Mistakes

1. Letting Your Dog Walk You

Wonder why your dog pulls? They pull because you follow! In an instant, it is you who is being walked by your dog. Having a “puller” can be hard work especially if you have a big furbaby. Being pulled by your dog can be exhausting, and even painful.

Training a “puller” during dog walks requires patience and consistency. Most dogs tend to move forward when they feel tension around their neck. It is best to train your furbaby as soon as pulling behaviors begin. If they pull, the walk stops. Make sure to reward your furbaby when they walk without pulling.

2. Being Too Strict

Being strict can be a good thing when walking your furbaby, but being too strict may not. Walks are supposed to be fun activities for your furbaby to sniff and immerse themselves in their surroundings. If you are too strict, walking them on a short lease and denying them the opportunity to explore, then where is the fun in that?

Your furbaby should be able to move freely when on a walk. Exploring and sniffing provides them mental and physical stimulation they need. It’s important to make sure they are able to adventure in their environment

3. Following The Same Route

Dog walking gives your furbaby some necessary fresh air, hip and joint exercise, and a bathroom break. These walks also allow them to take in different sights, smells, and sounds in the environment. The environment engages your furbaby’s senses and is very stimulating for them. It is best to alternate routes, to keep walks exciting and stimulating for your dog.

As noted by Dayton Daily News, John D. Visconti, a dog trainer, says to occasionally allow your dog to determine the route. Changing the walk route allows the dog to encounter novel scents and new scenery. Dogs love routines but to get the most out of your walks, do not become robotic about them.

4. Rushing Everything

Rushing is one of the most common dog walking mistakes some pet parents are guilty of.

Even if your dog quickly goes potty, it is important to give them the outdoor time they need. When taking your dog for a walk, make sure you are not rushing. Provide your furbaby with the time to sniff, explore, and enjoy the fresh air.

According to PetMD, determining how long you should walk your dog depends on a variety of factors, like age, breed, health, and energy level. Different breeds have different exercise needs. Most dogs can handle a daily 20–30 minute walk if they have a good body condition.

Pay attention to your dog’s body language. Pay attention to signs showing they may be tired, thirsty, or overheated. Some signs to look out for are heavy panting, laying down, slowed walking. It’s important to consider weather conditions, temperature, and terrain when determining walk length.

5. Preventing Socialization

We understand the safety precautions most pet parents take not to allow their dogs to approach unfamiliar dogs. But just because you are concerned for your dog’s safety, does not mean you should prevent them from socializing at all.

Dogs are social animals and, often, would love to greet people and dogs they meet on a walk! Socializing your dog is an important part of training your dog how to act in social situations. Remember to always ask permission before introducing your dog to another dog, and make sure others ask you before engaging with your dog.

6. Leaving Poop

Dog walks can be fun, but you still have a responsibility as a pet parent. Cleaning up after your furbaby is not a choice. It is also a great way to show respect for your community!

If you do not want to be picking up your pet’s waste on a busy sidewalk, try wearing Dog Diapers while out on a walk.

7. Leaving IDs at Home

One big mistake pet parents can make is leaving their furbaby’s identification at home. You never know what may happen when out on a walk. Your furbaby may escape from their dog leash or may wander too far while having them off-leash.

You can opt to go for a simple tag with your dog’s name, your name, and your address, and it’s always a great idea to have them microchipped.

8. Using Improper Equipment

When taking your dog for a walk, all you need is a dog leash and collars for dogs. Because there are many of options in the market, it is inevitable for pet parents to purchase the improper ones. When choosing your walking equipment, always consider comfort and safety.

When choosing collars for dogs, take into consideration their durability which can last your furbaby’s lifetime of adventures and withstand all elements & temperatures, just like the Oleo™ Collar! The Oleo™ Collar is dirt, water and odor resistant so this dog collar definitely stays clean longer, leaving the mess outdoors. Our dog collar also has anti-chafing and fur-safe properties while providing full control, reducing throat fatigue on your furbaby - and hand fatigue on you.

When choosing a dog leash, a leash that is too short easily creates tension, and will constantly create a choking sensation on your furbaby’s neck. Short dog leashes also allow your dog to pull, without giving enough slack for walks in open areas. While long dog leashes, on the other hand, will have the disadvantage of your dog always tripping and getting tangled. A retractable dog leash may also have the danger of suddenly snapping especially if your furbaby is a “puller” or a big dog.

We recommend the Oleo™ Leash! This dog leash has a 360-degree swiveling hook which means fewer tangles and more fun while walking. It also has an attachment ring for accessories, like poop bags and treats pouches. You also do not have to worry because it is equipped with a DuraCore™ inner chamber that allows for walks without the worry of a snapped buckle and a loose runaway pup.

Plus! Did we tell you you can mix and match any color or go monochromatic with the Oleo™ Collar and Leash? How fun could that be?

Dog walking is more than just walking. It’s important that both you, and your furbaby, are comfortable and safe. Avoid making any of these 8 dog walking mistakes.