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Steps to good walks for your dog

  If you are a small dog owner, you probably know how energetic these little pups are. Sometimes it seems that the amount of energy a dog has is the opposite of its size; the smaller the dog, the more energy he has!
 
All dogs need exercise, but small dogs frequently need even more of it to let out all that energy. You already take your dog for walks... so why not make the most out of them and give your small dog some real exercise?
Here are some tips for getting the most benefits out of walking with your dog:
During your regular walks, use a slightly quicker pace. Your dog will get an extra boost of exercise in the same amount of time, and so will you! You can also consider jogging with your pup. Before you do that, however, consult your veterinarian to make sure your little dog can handle the strain. Don't run too fast during your jogs, and make sure you go at a pace that your dog's little legs and back can handle.
If you don't want to or can't run, take your dog to a dog park. There are many dog parks and trails that allow dogs to run around freely and unleashed. If your dog is friendly with other canines this can be a great way to give them both healthy exercise and social interaction. Even when you are in a closed dog park, always keep an eye on your dog to make sure he is doing fine and is not in any danger.
A change of scenery can really benefit your dog, too. Take him on different routes once in a while. Cover a wide range of terrain for different experiences. If your dog gets a bit too excited by the walk, you can prepare him before the walk begins by playing with him for a few minutes before putting the leash on.
Walks are also a fantastic time to socialize your dog-just remember to stay safe. On your walks you are likely to meet many different dogs and people. It's a good idea to keep your dog on a leash at all times during a walk (except when he's in a dog park), so that if he encounters a new stimulus you can keep him close by. Know your dog's limits; if he is uncomfortable with small children, new dogs, or unfamiliar people, don't try to rush him into interacting with them.
Preparation before walking is also an important part of making the most out of your walks. The food your dog eats, for instance, can influence how much energy he has.
Keep your dog's well-being in mind during your walks as well. Small dogs can't take as much physical strain as larger dogs can. If you notice that your dog is having trouble keeping up, take a break. Always bring some water for your dog and make frequent hydration stops. Avoid hot asphalt: it can hurt your little dog's paws.
Make the most our of your daily walks with your dog and both of you will feel better, healthier, and ready for anything.

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