While certainly man’s best friend and often very comfortable in the family home, dogs thrive when given proper access to outdoor settings. As a relatively young descendant of the Grey Wolf, dogs as we know them evolved to live and work outside. While dogs do not need to spend all their time outdoors, this is often the environment they enjoy the most and find highly fulfilling. Access to varied outdoor settings offer dogs unparalleled sensory stimulation, and is paramount to their wellbeing.
There are any number of activities owners can do with their dogs to increase time spent outdoors. Daily walks are one of the easiest and most basic ways to achieve this. A brisk walk in the mornings and evenings promotes bonding between dog and owner, multisensory stimulation, and improved cardiovascular health. Even better is to allow your dog to dictate the speed at which you walk so it can explore interesting stimuli as it pleases, especially scents. Scent is a dog’s most important sense, so freely allowing sniffing and nasal exploration is particularly important.
More structured outdoor activities can also be valuable, particularly for intelligent dogs. Article retrieval, tracking, or substance detection are all challenging but enjoyable activities which are best done outdoors and allow dogs to exhibit a range of natural behaviours. While the primary objective of using scent to find a person, article, or substance is engaging on its own, the presence of additional stimuli such as other animals and even weather conditions offer significant enrichment value which should not be understated.
For more ideas on how to spend quality time with your dog outdoors, please email [email protected]. Our dedicated training team would be more than happy to assist, and are able to visit clients and their dogs for in-person sessions around the UK.
At Protection Dogs Worldwide, we are proud to be at the cutting edge of what we do. We select, train, and place world-leading working dogs with individuals and families requiring a higher level of security assurance. In an uncertain and volatile world, ordinary citizens are increasingly looking for novel ways…