We’ve all seen the memes on social media, dogs refusing to take that 10th walk during self-quarantine, confused about why the sudden change in their daily routine. It’s kind of funny in a way, but when you think about it from the dog’s perspective, this time of social distancing and staying at or working from home must be seriously confusing to Fido! One day, they were on their own, left to their own devices, waiting for their human to come home so they could take a quick walk. Now, their human is home all the time, wants to go out several times a day, and to be honest, it’s downright exhausting! So, how do you keep your dog active without overdoing it?
Establish a Routine
Things are currently different for us, as well as our pets. It’s important that if you are working from home, or home waiting to go back to work that you establish a consistent routine. Not only will this be good for your dog, but it will be great for you too. Having a sense of purpose, and staying consistent during your new routine will be the key to both you and your dog spending more time together than you normally do. Our suggestion is to take your dog for a walk two times per day. Once in morning and once in the evening. This may even be very close to your schedule during normal times, which is a good thing. There may be some quick trips outside in between that your dog may want, but these should not be full-on walks around the neighborhood. The important thing to remember is that this new “normal” may not last for an extended time, so keeping as close to your normal routine will be helpful when it’s time to go back to work outside the home.
Explore New Paths
Taking the same route for every walk will eventually get boring, for both you and your dog. Our recommendation is to try to find new places to walk, head in the opposite direction, or go to a new park (and continue to social distance) so that both you and your dog can find new things to see, smell, and listen to. If you are walking around your neighborhood, try going up and down streets you don’t normally walk down. Depending on whether this is a “doing his business” walk, or a leisurely for-fun outing, taking a detour will help you both feel more interested and engaged with the walk.
We’ve been offering some tips and tricks on social media to teach your dog some training and obedience techniques. We hope you’ve seen them! While out on your walks make the time productive by practicing some of the skills you’re both learning. From simple commands like stopping before crossing the street, sitting while other people go by, or even fetching if you’re in the park and can go off-leash (only when it’s safe and allowable). Practicing new obedience techniques can take a normal walk to the next level. Remember, the more you and your dog work at it, the easier and more natural it will become. Be sure to bring treats (or plenty of praise) if you are using the reward system.
We know it’s been a ruff (pun intended) couple of months. We’ve been working through new routines and trying to establish new, temporary “normal”. One thing we can all be excited about is that grooming has been opened up and your dog can come out to Camp K Nine for that much-needed bath, nail trim, and cut. Too bad you still have to wait to get your hair cut! Give us a call 848-225-8882 to schedule a contactless appointment or visit our website to book now.