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Walking your dogs is important for a variety of reasons:
Despite all of these benefits, many people only walk their dogs intermittently — or not at all — because they don’t feel like they can fit dog walks into a daily schedule that may include work, school, kids, and more. Because of that, we thought we’d offer up some helpful tips that can get you out the door with your pups.
1. Set Up a Schedule
Ideally, you want to try to walk your dogs at the same time every day, so creating a schedule can be very helpful. If you know you’re going to be walking them every day at 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., you can plan the rest of your life around this, set alarms, and so on. Just remember to protect yourself and your dog with reflective gear or an LED collar if it is dark out. And speaking of setting alarms…
2. Have a Daily Reminder
While an alarm clock may be necessary to help you get up for an early morning dog walk, it’s not the only way to stay on track. For many, setting up a daily reminder on their phone will be even more valuable — and less intrusive. Dogs also have an innate sense of time, so if you get them on a regular walk schedule, they’ll start reminding you themselves.
3. Bring the Stroller
Many people find that it becomes more difficult to walk their dogs after they have children, but you can’t let this stop you. Bring your little one with you on the walk by putting them in the stroller and bringing them along. Including the baby on the walk can also give your dog a job “herding” the stroller as you go.
4. Be Flexible
Can’t walk your dogs at the scheduled time one day? No worries — do it a few hours later. Unable to get a walk in at all? Come up with a backup plan such as tossing a tennis ball around your yard. Weather not walk-friendly? Exercise your dog indoors!
5. Get Up a Half Hour Earlier
If your problem is that you genuinely don’t have time in your daily schedule to go for a dog walk, one of the best solutions can be to expand that schedule by getting up earlier and devoting this time to the walk. It will be an adjustment at first, but both you and your dogs will benefit.
The underlying message here is that life will always create obstacles — it’s up to you to find your way around them so that your dogs can stay happy and healthy.