\\\ Dog Walking
Autumn is a lovely time for early morning dog walks and nothing better just before it’s dusk to take your pooch out again to end the day and relax in the evening providing your dog with a healthy and happy lifestyle.
Whether it’s the local park, recreation ground, country estate, field, beach or road walk, your dog needs variety in their everyday lives just as humans do and exercising regularly with varied walks is a must.
New To Dog Walking?
Dogs need daily exercise to keep them healthy, lively, and stop them from getting bored.
Many new owners do not realise when they buy a dog the amount of work involved in daily care and realise that they cannot cope and end up abandoning their dogs. So it’s important when buying a puppy or dog that you consider all their needs carefully and that includes daily dog walking suitable for their breed and size.
Puppies ideally should not be taken to any public park, doggy day centres, pet stores, beaches, walking trails, and other public areas should be avoided until they have received their last booster inoculation. Vets recommend waiting about 10-14 days after the jabs before venturing outside.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking you need to buy everything in the pet shop for your new puppy because it’s likely to grow and very soon will need larger items and with larger breeds that includes bigger sized collars, different types of walking leads, coats.
Essential Dog Walking Checklist
Being prepared for the Great British weather is essential when out walking. Planning your walks are essential with the right kit for the best experience for you and your pet.
- Dog collar and ID name tag
- Dog Lead short
- Dog Lead long
- Dog Poop bags and scoop
- A waterproof dog jacket for wearing in heavy rain
- Dog Treats
- A waterproof jacket for yourself
- Dog walking shoes, wellies or boots
- Torch or headlamp for darker evenings
- Mobile Phone
- Water bottle, bowl and towels for end of the walk (keep in the car, if driving to park)
- Muzzle (optional)
Do I Need To Have An Id Tag And Collar For My Pet?
Before you step outside with your dog, they must be wearing an ID Tag and collar.
A legal requirement since The Control of Dogs Order 1992 and needs to be worn on the pet’s collar or an ID tag before stepping outside of the home.
The ID should be engraved with information that can help anyone finding a lost dog to repatriate it quickly with the owner, including the name and address (including postcode) of the owner and telephone number is optional (but advisable).
The fine is £5,000 if your dog does not wear an identification tag.
Thousands of pets still go missing each year, despite being microchipped, where their pet owners have not kept their details up-to-date on the databases. This simple compliance can help to repatriate lost and found dogs back to their owners quickly.
ID tags can be bought from most pet stores and high street store such as Timpsons who will engrave the tag for you. Other owners like a plate to be secured on a collar if they have dogs that constantly keep losing their tags.
Exceptions include dogs used on official duties by the armed forces, HM Customs & Excise or the police. Dogs used for sporting purposes and packs of hounds. Dogs used for the capture or destruction of vermin. Dogs used for driving or tending cattle or sheep. Guide Dogs for the Blind. Dogs used for emergency rescue work.
Cats are not required to wear ID tags as they are deemed to be feral. However, many owners do opt for a small ID tag as well as a fully retractable fastening collar to be worn by their pet.
Daily Dog Walking
The amount of dog walking depends very much on the breed requirements being a huge commitment in time and effort needed, particularly if you go out to work, a substantial amount of the day.
City And Park Walking
Close-by dog-friendly parks are essential for dog walking, as are safe, open spaces and need assessing carefully. Some spaces become very busy at certain times of the day with regular dog walkers, having several different dogs walking routes available is best so they can be mixed up during the week to provide your dog with variety and relieve boredom.
Local parks, especially in cities, can be subject to PSPO orders, limiting the number of dogs being walked and timed restrictions. Check your local authority and council website for animal and pet information if new to dog walking or the area.
Local google searches such as ‘local dog walk’ can provide sharing websites such as Thegooddogguide.com where one can list favourite walks for free and provide useful information about them for others.
Days off from work or weekends provide the perfect opportunity to take your pet on longer excursions and days out and there are several national sites offering ideas such as The Outdoor Guide, Walks Near Me and National Trust.
If you like books then try the Countryside Books, stocked by Waterstones and Amazon whether it be a stroll or hilly walk.
9 Best Dog Walking Tips
- Let your dog sniff around, give them time.
- Don’t throw sticks as they can splinter and injure the dog’s mouth and throat.
- Keep your dog occupied and don’t let them scavenge for discarded food from overflowing bins, children’s dropped sweets or near bottles that may be broken and broken glass lying around which cut paws very easily.
- Take a good sized ball for your dog’s size, where they can’t swallow it and throw them.
- Vary the way you walk to the park walk to alleviate boredom for your dog.
- Vary the speed with a quick pace and then a slow couple of minutes keeping your pet alert.
- Take the opportunity to get your pet to exercise as much as possible. Signs of tiredness, stop the games and start walking home and likewise, if your pet isn’t tired when home and still playful then you know they haven’t had enough exercise.
- Keep dogs on a lead in built-up areas. Let them off only if you think they are safe, making sure your dog won’t be a nuisance to any other dog.
- Keep vigilant, thefts have been known to be made of dogs when in parks and on the way to and from dog walks.
Amount Of Average Exercise Your Dog Needs
Below is a list of 30 popular breeds which provides a rough guide to the amount of exercise that’s required by those breeds. Exercising a puppy is less as is a senior dog. Senior dogs may have joint mobility problems, failing eyesight, deafness and heart problems. Their walking and dietary requirements should ideally be talked through with a vet and reduced. Puppies gently build up their time. The exercising aim is to increase your puppys walking time by 5 minutes a month starting at three months being 15 minutes twice a day.
|30 Minutes or more||1 Hour or more||2 Hours or more|
|King Charles Spaniel||Cocker Spaniel||Labrador Retriever|
|Miniature Daschund||Pug||Border Collie|
|Maltese||Miniature Toy Poodle||Golden Retriever|
|Miniature Pinscher||Shetland Sheepdog||German Shepherd|
|Yorkshire Terrier||Bull Terrier||Dalmatian|
|Bichon Frize||Staffordshire Bull Terrier||Siberian Husky|
|Papillion||Saint Bernard||English Springer Spaniel|
|Pekingese||Basset Hound||Alaskan Malamute|
Dog Walking Services
Dog walking has seen a huge increase in small businesses offering convenient walking services for busy pet owners but sadly remains unregulated. With nearly one in three UK owners rely on dog walking services, three animal charities have drawn up guidelines to ensure safe animal welfare is of the highest priority, where walkers need not go under any professional checks to start-up a business.
A 16-page comprehensive guide has been produced by The Dogs Trust, Pet Industry Federation, RSPCA and Tailster, and is available online from the RSPCA, ‘Professional Dog Walkers’ providing an essential reading.
The guide covers areas such as the walker’s understanding of your dog’s needs, the transportation they use, exercising and group walking, returning home, lone walking and emergencies. The leaflet highlights the training of dog walkers, complying with legislation and termination of dog walking contracts.
Dog walkers, particularly in cities and large towns, may be subject to special restrictions using local parks under the PSPO laws and guidelines and may have to pay a fee for the use of payable to the local council.
Hiring A Dog Walker
14 Best TIPS – The questions to ask before hiring a dog walker
1. Check if your dog walking community rate your preferred choice of dog walking services, costs involved and read feedbacks left about the business.
2. Ask the dog walker to visit and explain their services. Who owns the business. Ask about times of dog walks, likewise your preferred times for your dog walking and services that you expect.
3. Check how many different dog walkers there are and whether one person tries to keep consistency with the dog.
4. Check how long the walks are and how many other dogs would be walking.
5. Have a look at their transport, inside fitments, if your dog is going to be using this.
6. Ask to see legal paperwork such as Business Professional Indemnity, Public Liability cover including Care, Custody and Control Liability insurance, DBS checks, and Personal Accident cover.
7. Explain if your dog has any special needs and likewise ask if they can be accommodated.
8. Ask to accompany the walker on a walk to see how the other dogs are being handled.
9. Ask what they do if the weather changes during the walk.
10. Check what they do when returning dogs from walking in the home, providing fresh water for the rest of the day if there is no water fountain, any treats that may be required to be given and ensuring the dog is towelled down and dry if muddy and wet after the walk.
11. Ask for evidence of how they secure your keys to your home whilst in their possession.
12. Ask if they are Animal First Aid trained and provide sight of their professional completion of course.
13. Check what procedures are in place in case your dog becomes ill whilst in their care.
14. Check if they offer an weekend services, stop-over services and emergency evening services.
GPS Pet Trackers For Roaming Pets
GPS Pet tracking devices have become highly sophisticated, and now very affordable either being fixed onto your pet’s collar or bought separately and attached by the owner.
Ideal for those pets who roam, perfect to use for dogs who won’t obey calls and whistles and disappear out of sight on walks with the slightest signs of interesting new smells and wildlife.
Subscription pet tracking services offer
- Light, robust models
- Real-time tracking
- Worldwide tracking facilities
- Monitoring within 1-2 meters of the pet
- Very frequent position updates
Like all new improved technology, over the years has now become competitively priced and with several companies vying for your business
Cats that are happy and content with regular daily food and water, warm home, content with other pets living alongside them, and have their own designated sanctuary, which appeals to the majority of cats, then it is unlikely they will disappear of their own accord and do not need the use of a tracker.
Cats can wear the lighter GPS weight trackers on their collars if they frequently roam and be tracked and followed by their owner on the mobile phones, anytime, 24/7.
Insurance firms support the use particularly dog breeds, and expensive cat pets, tortoises and parrots and are perfect for your pet to wear during international travel, helping owners to monitor the pet’s location at all times.
TIP Ideal to ask your insurance company to consider a discount on premiums when using these useful GPS devices.
Guides And Features
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First Aid For Your Dog
Something that not all pet lovers think about is having the basic skills to help an injured dog before rushing off to a vet. Franchise company Dog First Aid was set up just for that purpose to help owners in real emergencies help to save their dog’s life.
It’s so easy for glass left lying around to cut paws or thorns and brambles to cut pets paws. Accidents can happen around the home, garden, in cars, and out dog walking.
The pets charity Blue Cross have a dedicated first aid page covering all kinds of eventualities that may occur from drowning to electrical shocks.
There are several online sellers providing pet first aid packs, small enough to go into backpacks or kept in your car, handy whilst out walking, along with water bowls and bottles, and towels for cleaning off mucky dogs at the end of walks.
Life-saving skills are essential for those working with dogs such as dog handlers, boarders, groomers, and rescue dog handlers.
New Unfamiliar Areas Can Contain Some Unplanned Hazards
New parks, open spaces, new gardens and even daily walks can provide the opportunity for your dog to eat poisonous plants, shrubs and trees that you may not be familiar with. Check out our plant feature below.
10 BEST TIPS to help to stay safe
- Ensure your dog does not disturb the local wildlife.
- Keep your dog away from cliff edges.
- Follow all signs left by property owners, landowners, farmers.
- Animals calving especially cattle can feel threatened. Keeping your dog under control is essential to avoid stampedes.
- Do not let your dog near electric fences. They can shock, frightening a dog who may bolt and runoff.
- Watch out for sharp objects if walking on beaches which can cut paws or cause discomfort.
- Ensure your pet does not scavenge on beaches.
- Watch your dog if they swim at all times. They can get swept out easily in strong currents.
- Avoid going near to lakes and ponds that look stagnant (green-blue colour water) as the water will upset your pet and can kill if drunk.
- Don’t leave your dog in the car whilst you enjoy a walk.
More than 1,100 tonnes of dog waste is dropped a day by dog walkers and their pets. UK local councils must keep public areas like parks, playgrounds and pavements clear of dog mess. Dedicated bins are provided for dog owners to pick up their dog’s mess and place this in the bins.
The Dog Fouling Act of 2016, places responsibility on “the person in charge of the dog” at the time of the misdemeanour. Fines currently imposed are up to £80.00. In some council areas, you can be fined for forgetting to carry poo bags or pooper scoopers when out dog walking.
There’s a huge selection of dog poop bags including bio-degradable and fragranced, fitting every budget; purchase them in numerous supermarkets, pet shops, general stores, online pet stores
Councils encourage residents to be responsible, where they see a dog owner who is continuously breaking the dog fouling laws, to report them, and usually have a simple online page on their council websites. The few exceptions made are for those who have mobility and disabilities, working dogs such as sheepdogs and police dogs whilst on duty.
It is illegal to leave dog waste in the majority of UK public places and parks, but you can avoid fines in agriculture and woodlands, rural common land, marshland and motorways areas.
If you have a garden then it’s possible to create an area for your dog to relieve themselves and keep dog mess in one area which can be picked up quickly. Use a material like small pebbles or bark (not cocoa bark which is toxic to pets) and where it can be frequently hosed down to keep the area hygienic and topped up with fresh bark when it requires it.
Always make sure you teach young children never to touch poop as it can be dangerous to human health even causing blindness.
Keep Warm And Dry When Out With Your Dog Walking
Dog Walking Kit Checklist
The Great British weather demands that dog walkers be prepared for any weather! Outdoor dog walking essential must-haves include, bodywarmer, hoodie, fleece, hiking jacket, waterproof trousers, wellies, walking boots, trainers, hat, scarf, gloves, thermal coat, bodybag, backpack, sunglasses and water bottle.
Whilst we’ve all been spending millions on our favourite pets with specially designed treats, toys, luxury beds and equipment, owners need to get kitted out for all-weather dog walking.
alloutdoor clothing and footwear keeping you warm and dry dog walking with more than 200 premium brands online.
Jackets, vests, gilets, waterproofs, gloves, hats and everything else you may need for walking and the great outdoors.
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After A Long Day Walking Try Relaxing
Relax to specially designed pet music for dogs and cats. More than 30 albums and 220 tracks available on Spotify created by Amman Ahmed, access on all platforms IOS, Amazon Fire, Apple TV, Roku and Android. Cool music to help any dog or cat with anxiety issues or stress and loneliness at home or travelling the car. Tracks relax and soothe puppies and dogs. Strongly recommended for owners, you may end up nodding off with your pet!
\\\ Cat Walking
Cats like to naturally roam and are not suited to be trained to go walking on a lead even when living indoors only. They are very territorial and prefer not to be forced into unnatural situations.They can become distressed very easily, and the rising trends noticed on social media where owners are taking cats out in harnesses and leads is causing animal welfare groups and animal behaviourists concern. Owners can easily stimulate their indoor cats by providing play, play toys, an interesting environment and loving attention.
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