National Walk Your Dog Week – 1-7 October

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What is National Walk Your Dog Week All About?

It became a tradition the first week of October to be designated to remind us about the benefits our dogs bring to us. National Walk Your Dog Week and it’s here to show us the joys of outdoor exercise with our fluffy pooch.

female jack russell on a pink leash walking in the street

Many pet owners think that dogs need just a walk around the building or a quick run in the yard to finish their business. Dogs need a lot of exercises and with that, a lot of mental stimulation comes with smelling the flowers, meeting other dogs, ball games, and throwing sticks.

Every year, communities across the country celebrate National Walk Your Dog Week to remember the importance for people and their pets to enjoy time together. There are many events all over the country where you can participate in a walk or fun family activities.

This dog week, walk your dogs off-leash and through a course of obstacles, run through water, or roll in the mud.  Participate in competitions led by professionals, and enjoy other outdoor activities including ball throwing, frisbee catching, and searching for buried treasure.

The History of National Walk Your Dog Week

National Walk Your Dog Week began in 1982 as a grassroots effort to promote the joy of walking animals and to demonstrate concern for those who walk them. The National Walking Federation now sponsors the event.

Cities and non-profit organizations sponsor events on this week-long holiday of walking with your best friend to help raise money for local animal shelters and care facilities.

national walk your dog week banner
Photo Courtesy of: National Walk Your Dog Week website

How to Celebrate National Walk Your Dog Week

Regular exercise and running are not just beneficial for mental health but for physical too. Many pets in the world that are underexercised are overweight. Pet obesity is a very serious thing that can lead to many health problems.

Veterinary specialists advise that you should walk your dog at least twice a day for a minimum of 15 minutes. We recommend at least three walks a day. Walks can be fun, they don’t have to be just a walk around the block for your dog to relieve itself, you can make a party out of every walk.

We know that not always is that possible, sometimes is raining, and sometimes the weather is too hot. But you can try to make one of the walks to be longer than 15 minutes and have fun with your dog. Go to the park, throw a ball, chase each other, your dog will be thankful.

man throwing a ball to his white dog on the grass

The benefits of walking your dog are not just beneficial for your dog, you will feel immediate health benefits yourself. Regular daily walks are good for your health too, they stimulate your metabolism and promote the release of happy hormones.

Can your partner get up with the dog in the middle of the night? Is your dog constantly begging for food or attention while you’re trying to work, or ignoring you when you need to train him? Does he jump on people, bark too much, or just generally act like a nuisance?

It’s time to take back control of your life and start walking your dog. Walking can be great for both of you! Here are some reasons why walking is beneficial:

  • It gives it more exercise.
  • You can train it with positive reinforcement.
  • It helps build exercise into your busy lifestyle
  • You bond with your dog.

How do I walk my dog? How long should we walk? Be sure to consult your veterinarian and follow his instructions, but here are some general guidelines: Give your dog daily exercise no matter what the season. If it’s cold, you may want to head out for a cold hike or take a short walk.

Local communities host events at parks, on roads, and in other open spaces in their neighborhoods. Events are not just for dogs, though. Families with children often celebrate Walk your dog week together. 

Do some personal research in your community to find out if there is a national walk your dog day happening. There is no need for you to organize anything in your community.

What time should I walk my dog? The best time to walk your dog can depend on various factors, such as your dog’s age, breed, energy level, and personal preferences. However, there are a few general guidelines you can follow:

  1. Consider the weather: Dogs can overheat quickly in hot weather, so it’s best to avoid walking during the hottest part of the day. In contrast, walking during the cooler parts of the day, such as early morning or evening, can be more comfortable for your dog.
  2. Think about your dog’s routine: If your dog is used to a certain routine, try to stick to it as closely as possible. For example, if your dog is used to going for a walk in the morning, try to schedule your walks around that time.
  3. Take into account your own schedule: Choose a time that works well with your own schedule and commitments. It’s important to make sure that you have enough time to walk your dog and provide the exercise and attention they need.
  4. Be mindful of your neighborhood: If you live in a busy neighborhood, it may be best to walk your dog during quieter times of the day to avoid potential hazards or distractions.

Ultimately, the best time to walk your dog is when both you and your dog can enjoy the walk and spend quality time together.

Just have fun with people and dogs everywhere!

Some Dog Walking Ideas

National Walk Your Dog Week is a great opportunity to get outside and spend some quality time with your furry friend. Here are some fun dog walking ideas to try during this special week:

  1. Go on a nature hike: Take your dog on a scenic hike and explore some new trails. Make sure to bring plenty of water and snacks for both you and your pup.
  2. Play fetch: Bring along your dog’s favorite toy and play a game of fetch at the park or in your backyard. This is a great way to get some exercise and bond with your pet.
  3. Try obedience training: Take advantage of your dog’s focus during the walk and practice some basic obedience commands such as sit, stay, and come.
  4. Go on a photo scavenger hunt: Make a list of different things to find on your walk (such as a blue flower or a squirrel) and take a photo with your dog next to each item.
  5. Visit a dog-friendly café: Find a local café that allows dogs and enjoy a cup of coffee with your furry friend by your side.
  6. Go on a socialization walk: Invite a friend and their dog to join you on a walk to help socialize your dog and provide an opportunity for playtime.
  7. Walk for a cause: Participate in a charity walk or event that benefits dogs in need. This is a great way to give back while enjoying time with your pet.
brown dog being walked in nature by owner

Remember to always prioritize your dog’s safety and comfort during walks, and consult with a veterinarian if you have any concerns about your pet’s health or behavior.

So go, have fun with your dog! It’s National Walk Your Dog Week!

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