The Naked Scientists

The Naked Scientists Forum

Author Topic: Do dogs really need walks all the time?  (Read 1175 times)

Offline Pseudoscience-is-malarkey

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 96
    • View Profile
Do dogs really need walks all the time?
« on: 27/04/2016 07:16:42 »
I am a stay at home husband here at Syracuse University, who spends 70% of his life in archive preservation. Reading, writing up grants, ect.  I do not allow my doggy to go out on brisk walks. I restrain him with a long leach. Doggy abuse?
« Last Edit: 29/04/2016 07:15:23 by chris »


Offline Atomic-S

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 935
  • Thanked: 19 times
    • View Profile
Are you out walking and holding onto the leash at the time when the doggy is on it, or is the leash simply tied to a fixed point all the time?

Offline alancalverd

  • Global Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4729
  • Thanked: 155 times
  • life is too short to drink instant coffee
    • View Profile
Depends on the dog.

Although there is only one species of domestic dog, the breeds are more widely different in intellect, character and physique than any other species that we have engineered over the centuries.

Some small "toy" dogs cannot exercise for long, whereas ratcatchers' breeds (Jack Russell and suchlike) of similar stature can (indeed must) run and fight for hours if you don't want them attacking visitors and soft furnishings. At the other end of the scale, huskies are born to run all day (but don't get as grumpy as terriers if they have to sit out a snowstorm) whilst Great Danes turn out to be good city dogs because they don't need (some can't tolerate) as much exercise as humans. In between you can find sheepdogs and retrievers that will happily jog around the countryside, or negotiate traffic as guide dogs, for as long as you can keep them working and interested, and brainless greyhounds that will sprint for ten minutes for no reason, then sleep for an hour. 

The problem with a leash is that many dogs go into defensive-aggressive mode when restrained, because they can't run away from an aggressor, so their first response to other dogs and even people is to fight and dominate, whereas off-lead dogs quickly establish  a collaborative social order and usually play-fight or go off exploring in a pack.

The trick is to find a dog that suits your lifestyle, or better, get a job that suits your dog.

Have to stop now - Sophie is giving me "that look".   
« Last Edit: 27/04/2016 13:43:17 by alancalverd »

Offline puppypower

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 561
  • Thanked: 43 times
    • View Profile
A well exercised dog is a happy and manageable dog. Exercise, especially off lease, solves many problems since it allows a dog practice their instincts and center themselves, naturally.

Years back, I purchased a work line Doberman Pincher pup. I was familiar with Dobermans, but I didn't initially appreciate what a work line Doberman meant. It meant a high drive alpha dog; over achiever. He had so much energy and drive that he was almost too much to handle his first year.

Along with his energy, drive, and dominance, work line Doberman's have a lot of sensitivity and intelligence. He could read me like a book. If I was not leading as the alpha, he would engage in a scary aggressive play style, challenging me for the role of alpha dog. He would stock me at night and appear out of nowhere in the darkness, with me as his prey. He wanted his master to be stronger than him, and he would not accept anything less. He was training me. Once I would step up, he was fine.

What I found to be the key to a harmonious relationship and a more manageable dog, was long walks off leash. He was not exactly off leash, but rather he would have his pinch collar and drag a long lead behind him. The long lead made it easier to catch him if I needed to get him back on leash in public places to avoid a ticket. 

Off leash he could patrol around me, as I walked, chase small animals, and play with every dog we would meet. I socialized him with dogs by training him to have no aggressive and no fear of other dogs. I would set the example and he would watch and copy. A dog with no fear and no aggression is a friend or pack mate. He was so good with dogs, he even lay down low to allow pups to climb on him and engage them in play. If he saw a pack of dogs he would walk into the middle and spend a few minutes with each. He was always accepted. 

After his that, he became a really good dog who was calm, compliant and could be brought anywhere. You could talk to him and he understood. Although he was a short haired dog, always liked his walk so much he would want to go out, even in the snow and below zero weather. He never liked to wear those sissy coats, but never complained of the cold.

Offline McQueen

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 545
  • Thanked: 6 times
    • View Profile
The thing to remember with a dog is " That outside of a dog.... a book is man's best friend, inside of a dog....... etc"

IF you plan on getting a dog remember that it is a living sentient being that needs as much, if not more care, as any human being. So while a human being might be satisfied with just having company, a dog might need reassurance at some point or the other. If he is caged , he has to be let out , preferably off the leash, for several hours every day, he also needs a walk and a good diet and if he has any problem, like moulting, lack of appetite and so on, it needs to be promptly attended to. If these basic needs are taken care off it can be a rewarding relationship, if not, what's the point ?

Of course a lot depends on the kind of dog you have got, Labradors are quite content to sit in one place and will only be tempted by food, they like to carry things around in their mouths even if it is only a twig.  But by and large most dogs do love a walk and if you have one of those, make it a point to go for a walk, preferably with a harness and not a collar because he is going to pull. The chances are that it will do you more good than it does the dog.

The Naked Scientists Forum


SMF 2.0.10 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
SMFAds for Free Forums