A guest blog from a Dog Listener on the other side of the world!
“As a responsible dog owner you are regularly advised that your dog needs daily exercise to maintain optimum health both physically and mentally. So on go the running shoes, out comes the mountain bike and you’re off, best friend in tow. But do you know how much exercise is too much exercise? How would you know if you were over exercising your dog? I have witnessed a few times recently dogs that have obviously reached their physical limit but who are still being asked to do more. This led me to ask the question, are these owners unaware of the signs that their dog has reached their limit, or is the regular message ‘in order to have a well behaved dog you must give it adequate daily exercise” causing well meaning dog owners to exercise their dogs to such an extent that they are actually compromising the physical and mental health of their dog, despite their best intentions to the contrary?
Coming into summer (a way off for us yet in the UK!!!), as temperatures rise, it becomes even more important that owners know their dog’s limits, know how to look after their dogs during exercise and be able to recognise and know what to do should their dog show signs of overheating.
Moreover, it’s just as important to be aware that exercise alone does not ‘cure’ behavioural issues. For example, take a dog that suffers from separation anxiety at home when left by itself. When out for a run this dog may not be running for the pure pleasure of it, but may in fact be running out of the fear of losing its ‘pack’. It is vitally important that owners recognise the difference between these two as a dog running out of stress can run beyond its limit to the point where it may compromise its own safety.
To learn more about everything I have mentioned click on the link below which takes you to a fantastic article which will tell you all you need to know. Please read it!
Take great care of and have fun with your best mate when the summer comes.”
Vicki Lowe lives in Auckland, New Zealand. Vicki is a highly qualified Dog Listener and able to assist all dog owners with every aspect of dog behavioural issues. For more information go to www.adogsperspective.co.nz To add to Vicki’s very valid points, I would also like to contribute that in many cases, the well intended walk can actually be the cause of behavioural problems experienced, due to the adrenalin released to cope with the demands of going out into ‘no-man’s land’ and the stress hormone left in the body as a result. For more information get in touch!