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Top 8 Benefits of Daily Dog Walks

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Overview


Visiting your local dog park, trekking down a hiking trail, or simply circling the block is beneficial for both you and your dog's mental and physical well-being. Plus, regular walks are also one of the best ways to build a bond with your barking buddy. Check out these 8 benefits of daily walks with your woofer!


Gives your pup much-needed socialization

Socialization from a young age is vital for dogs. Dogs that are well socialized by 16 weeks old tend to be less anxious and less likely to display fear-based aggression. A puppy that regularly goes on walks is much more likely to feel comfortable in their surroundings and generally happier. Walk your dog daily to give them the chance to fine-tune their social skills. 


Relieves your dog's stress and anxiety

It's no secret that dogs can experience anxiety. This is only compounded when a pooch is stuck inside without any stimulation. Prevent boredom and destructive tendencies by taking your pupper on an exciting daily adventure. Getting out for a long loop around the neighborhood allows them to explore and let out pent-up energy, which will help relieve stress. 


Provides the "pawfect" opportunity for training

Dog training is super important, and there's no better time to practice some new skills than on a dog walk. With lots of distractions from new noises and smells, dog walks are a great time to check if your pup has properly picked up a new trick. From simple commands like "sit" to ensuring your dog comes when called, walks are wonderful for training.


Gives your dog a healthy dose of mental stimulation

Dog walking is excellent physical exercise, but roaming large fields and running over hills also provides ‚Äúpawsitive‚ÄĚ mental benefits. Your best buddy thrives on attention and affection from you, but giving the brain a good workout is essential to keep your pup happy and healthy. Following a scent, woofing at wildlife, and traversing a challenging trail engages your canine BFF, stimulating their minds.

A labradoodle walking on a leash along an asphalt trail

Prevents obesity, joint problems, and other diseases

Regular walks are the best way for puppers to stay in shape. Walks help with obesity and keep a dog's joints in top condition. Regular exercise can help prevent your dog from developing common joint conditions like arthritis and hip dysplasia. Walking promotes a healthy heart and can even help prevent serious health problems like cardiovascular disease. 


Creates a bond

The bond between you and your pupper comes naturally when you spend time walking and admiring the beauty of the great outdoors. Dog walking is an opportunity to spend one-on-one time with your dog in a new environment, creating lasting memories for you and your mutt. Plus, walking around in new situations will help you understand your dog's "pawsonality" a little better. 


Reduces your own risk of disease

Dog walking doesn't just benefit fur-babies, but us too! Dog walking can help lower blood pressure and cholesterol and reduce your chances of developing conditions like type 2 diabetes. Pet parents are also less likely to be obese than people without pets. Studies show that pet parents visit the doctor fewer times per year and are less likely to be on heart medication or sleep aids than people without pets. 


Improves your mental health

Dog walking can improve your mental health, relieving symptoms of depression, stress, and even aiding people with PTSD. Pet parents are less likely to get lonely, and dog walking will generally improve your mood, as exercise releases serotonin and dopamine. 

Two wet dogs running across grass with tree in background

Frequently asked questions about dog walking

If you have a big yard, do you need to walk your dog?

A big yard is ideal for letting your pup go potty or to get some fresh air, but it shouldn't replace regular walks. For a dog to be happy in your yard, you'd need several acres of space where you can go for long walks. 

While your dog can run around in the yard, they're not getting the same level of exercise and stimulation that a walk offers. Dogs are social creatures and don't have as much fun playing by themselves as they would with other dogs and people. 

Walks allow dogs to experience new smells and sounds, which will help keep them mentally stimulated. This will stop your dog from getting bored at home, which can lead to destructive behavior. 

Your dog will meet lots of new people and pups in walks, which will help them build confidence. Socializing means your dog is less likely to be aggressive and fearful of strangers as they age. 

Some of the most intelligent and active breeds, like Border Collies, require at least an hour of intense exercise every day, and playing in the yard won't provide that level of stimulation.

Do dogs get sick of the same walking route?

Dogs get tired of walking the same route, but that doesn't mean you need to change up their route every day. Dogs find comfort in walking through the same areas as they recognize the scents and sounds in the environment. Dogs also thrive on routine, and walking the same trails at the same time of day can make them feel at ease. 

At the same time, dogs enjoy new sights and smells, so changing up their walking route is important to prevent boredom. If you walk around the same couple of blocks, try something simple, like changing direction. Try to regularly take your dog for a special adventure at the beach or a new park to keep them on their toes. 

Find out more in our related guide: Do Dogs Get Bored of the Same Walk?

What are some quick tips to keep your dog walks fun and fresh?

  • Motivate yourself with a dog walking journal. A paper journal or note-taking app for your smartphone can keep you motivated. Track the miles you and your dog trek together, and set daily, weekly, and monthly goals.¬†

  • Keep your dog walking gear within reach and easily accessible. Have a basket by the door containing poop bags, treats, a leash, and your pup's best-loved ball. It's easier to head out on a walk when everything you need is ready to go.¬†

  • Find the right harness and leash. If you're leash training issues, consider purchasing a front-clip harness or martingale harness to help with training. These harnesses will prevent any damage to your dog's throat when pulling while teaching your dog walking etiquette.

  • Don't rush your dog's bathroom breaks. Dogs use potty breaks to signal to offer dogs and mark their surroundings. Rushing your dog when they use the bathroom means they won't get as much fulfillment from their walks.



Don't have time to walk your woofer? Book a local dog walker to ensure Sparky gets their steps in!



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