Many dog owners enjoy daily walks with their dogs, and for good reason. Walking your dog is a great way for you and your dog to get exercise, enjoy your time together, and meet up with other people and their dogs.
But did you know that nearly 40% of all dog owners rarely or never walk their dogs? There are lots of reasons for this. Many owners simply let their dogs out in the yard. People who work long hours often hire dog walkers. Some owners of small dogs have trained them to do their business inside.
She invited a group of dog owners who said they seldom walked their dogs to a special dog obedience class. They were told the class was designed to improve their dogs’ on-leash behavior, but it was really done to monitor the humans’ activity!
Half of the participants were enrolled in the class and half were wait-listed. The people taking the class were asked to record their dogs’ activity outside of class, but the researchers were really monitoring the people.
Results showed that the class participants did end up walking their dogs for a few minutes more per week than those not in the class, but not as much as the researchers were hoping to see.
The class participants did report feeling closer to their dogs and happier about their dogs’ behavior, confirming that going for walks is a great way to improve the bond with your dog.