4 ways to make your walk more exciting for your dog, according to an expert

Brown dog sniffing the grass on a walk
(Image credit: K_Thalhofer/Getty Images)

Walks go hand-in-hand with owning a dog. Whether you love taking them out or it's a bit of a chore, it's something we do every day as a devoted pup parent.

Whilst lots of people might measure the quality of their walks by the number of steps or the time spent, it turns out that there's actually more to it than that. If you're not including other things (like mini training sessions using the best dog treats), then there's a chance that your dog might feel bored eventually.

Lisa, an award-winning dog trainer, has shared four ways that you can make your daily walk more of an adventure for your pooch. Not only will this help to mentally stimulate them, but it's also a great way to tire them out (something that feels impossible if you've got a little pup on your hands). Let's dive in:

1. Try a new route

It's easy to stick to the same walking route everyday (especially if it's one that you both enjoy), but Lisa recommends switching things up regularly. This will give your dog the opportunity to experience new environments and scents. If you're on the hunt for a new location, here are 32 of the best dog walks in the US.

She says: "Don't traverse the same route every day - challenge yourself to regularly introduce novelty of environment to your dog's walks."

2. Allow your dog to sniff

Waiting around for your dog to sniff isn't the most exciting thing for us to do, but it has so many benefits for them. Lisa explains that this is a form of mental exercise, helping them to collect new information about their surroundings, the dogs in the area and what has been going on.

She says: "Let them stop to investigate, let them track, and don't repeatedly force disengagement."

3. Add mini training sessions into your walks

When you take your dog out, it's a good idea to pack some treats so that you can get a bit of training in throughout your walk. 

Lisa says: "Show your dog how valuable it is to stay connected to you outside of the home; grow his obedience skills and flex his brain as well as his legs!"

4. Stay engaged

Whilst we've all been guilty of using our phones during walk times, Lisa advises putting it away and focusing on your dog. By doing this, you can pick up on their distractions, worries and what they enjoy. This will help you to understand them better and to create a training schedule that works for both of you. 

She says: "These are all really important factors that will help you design a training schedule - and a life - that will help him be the best dog possible."

For more content like this, check out out these features on ways to build self-care into your dog walk and three of the most common loose leash walking mistakes (and how to fix them).


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Megan Milstead
Staff Writer

Megan is a Staff Writer on PetsRader, covering news, features and buying guides. She has a wealth of experience looking after animals, having grown up with dogs, cats and horses all of her life. She’s particularly interested in pet happiness and behavior, which she loves to research in her spare time. You’ll often find her watching webinars on reactivity in dogs or researching cat body language. She loves going the extra mile for her cats Chilli and Nala (who also help out with testing the best products for our buying guides). 

Megan studied BA Journalism at the University of Westminster, where she specialized in lifestyle journalism and was editor of Smoke Radio’s online magazine. She also graduated from West Herts College with a Level 3 Extended Diploma in Journalism. Before joining the PetsRadar family last year, she worked on the editorial team at Harrods and has spent most of her career writing for specialized titles, like RunningShoesGuru, Licklist and Mr. After Party. 

Megan works alongside qualified vets and accredited trainers to ensure you get the best advice possible. She is passionate about finding accurate and helpful answers to your pet-related questions.