What do you do with a dog that doesn't want to walk? Treats! (with owner's permission because some dogs have sensitive digestive systems) If you have a dog that wants to sit or lie down during a walk, treats can help. Often, tossing a treat in the direction that you are headed gets the momentum going again and the dog will continue walking. I also never rush a dog on a walk. Sniffing is important to a dog and can tire them as much as a run because the sniffing is mentally stimulating. However, having said that, changing up the tempo can be stimulating too and can keep a dog moving because it is more interesting to them than the same steady pace. Always have treats on hand. Walks are excellent opportunities to train and learn.
What do I do with the poop bag if there isn't a trash can nearby? Clip carabiners to the treat bag or your belt loops. When you tie the knot in the bag, prior to tightening the knot, slip it onto the carabiner. Tighten and keep walking until you see a covered poop can or public trash can. Please do not place in private property trash cans or leave the bags behind for later. Be responsible and always clean up after your dog and dispose of the poop politely. Some states will fine you if you put poop bags in recycling cans or yard waste cans. Please dispose of bags in accordance with your local laws and regulations.
What is the safest way to pass another dog on a walk? Don't pass another dog if you do not have to pass them. The safest method when you see another dog is to go around them or to turn around and go the other direction. Your dog may be completely safe to pass. You never know about the other dog though. If you cannot go around the other dog or turn around and you must pass, pass on the side of the person - not the dog side. The person is not likely to bite or lunge at you. The dog may be another story. Always be safe. Your fellow dog walkers will appreciate it.
What collar and leash should I use? It depends. Does your dog pull? Is it a little dog with a delicate neck or trachea? A regular flat collar can injure the neck or trachea of a puller. A standard back clip harness can actually encourage pulling. A front-clip harness or gentle leader is a safer more pleasant tool to use for pullers. Small dogs are more delicate and can be injured by basic neck collars. A front clip harness can keep their neck safer and help curb pulling. Martingale collars are popular for dogs that like to wiggle out of a standard flat collar. They don't cinch down on the dog's neck like a choke collar but the tighten up a couple of inches when the dog pulls and it keeps them a little safer. Retractable leashes are our least favorite. These leashes tangle up easily and dogs can get into trouble very quickly. Retractable leashes are associated with the most accidents.
My dog gets diarrhea easily. What can I do? Always check with a vet if there is unusual diarrhea or blood in the stool. However, for common diarrhea that is more likely stress related or a dog that ate something that didn't agree with their digestive systems, pureed canned pumpkin is a wonderful thing to mix into their food. Cooked white rice also helps. Be careful to not feed your dog new foods. Most really cannot tolerate a change in diet without getting an upset tummy. Allergies can also cause digestive upset. Always check with a vet if diarrhea persists or there is any blood present.