Avoid a confrontation with a reactive dog while walking your pet
Defensive dog walking is what a responsible pet parent does to avoid confrontations with other dogs

Be On The Defensive…Not The Offensive
When we first learn to drive a car, we are taught to be a defensive driver, not one that acts in an aggressive manner where a situation could end in an accident. Well, actually, the same applies when you walk your dog. Without exception, it is always better to avoid a conflictive situation; to take appropriate action; to stay safe.

To Share Or Not To Share…The Sidewalk
Naturally, you have the right to walk your dog on the sidewalk. Nevertheless, it is your responsibility as a pet parent, to teach him to walk properly on the leash and eliminate the urge to pull, to lunge, to bark and growl, and to become ferocious.

Likewise, it is the responsibility of other pet parents who you are likely to come across on your walks to do exactly the same.

But, this is not a perfect world. Some dogs are hard to train, some dogs have never been trained, and some dogs have acquired certain negative behaviors as a result of previously being abandoned, injured, or abused.

If your dog knows another dog really well and they are both friendly towards each other, then there is no reason why they shouldn’t interact and rub noses. However, when this is not the case, and this is most of the time, the best advice I can give is…be on the defensive.

What I Do – When I see a dog walking towards me, I cross over to the other side. That will avoid coming face to face which could possibly result in a direct confrontation.

Sometimes, the other person walking the dog will act first and cross before you do. Sometimes, they will actually turn around and back track to find another route to walk along. Now that is one smart, responsible human!

Together, let’s keep our precious pets healthy, happy and safe!


Dog walking while distracted

Safety is definitely a huge pet priority of mine and being in control is a major first step towards keeping your companion safe.

If you are distracted while out walking and jogging with Fido, not looking or listening properly, not being attentive and fully aware of your surroundings, it’s probably time to make some changes.

This blog is about distractions and here’s a list of some of them.
cell phones
ear buds
the mail
neighbors and passers-by

Why am I mentioning these seemingly unimportant things? What do they have to do with safety? Here’s why. Here’s what can happen.

FACT: You use your phone to talk, text or read while out walking your dog.
QUESTION: If you absolutely have to do any of the above, how should you do so safely?
ANSWER: Step away from the road, hold your dog on a very short leash, look around you to be aware of your surroundings, and remain stationary.

This is not exactly a walking situation but I wanted to mention it here because I have witnessed many single family home owners/renters do this.
FACT: You let your dog out in your front yard off-leash to potty while you walk to the curbside to pick up your mail and are looking at the leaflets/envelopes while you walk back towards the house.
QUESTION: You do this all the time. Why shouldn’t you?
ANSWER: You are taking an unnecessary risk. Go out front with your dog on a leash, to potty. Take him back inside. Then go and pick up your mail.

FACT: You use ear buds to listen to music.
QUESTION: Is it okay to have the volume turned down low?                      ANSWER: No, it is not okay. Leave the ear buds at home. You need eyes AND ears to hear what’s going on around you, such as cyclists, traffic, verbal warnings and so on.

FACT: You stop during your walk to talk to neighbors and passers-by.
QUESTION: How can this possibly be a potential problem?
ANSWER: It is quite unlikely. However, make sure your dog is on a short leash and that you stay well clear of traffic and step out of the way of other walkers, joggers and cyclists.

Together, let’s keep our precious pets healthy, happy and safe!