Your dog probably does a lot of stuff when you take them out for a walk. Some of this behavior is good, the rest… Not so much. One thing they do that you might not think anything about, though, is sniffing. It’s a behavior that links all dogs, and it seems there are some excellent reasons why you should promote it when you’re out and about.
It can tire out your dog
The main purpose of most walks is to tire out your canine companion and get them out of the house. These animals tend to be full of energy, and a couple of walks every day can help them use up their daily reserves. However, just because they’re out exercising, that doesn’t mean they’re using up their energy effectively. Sometimes, the best way to wear them out is to simply let them off their leash and allow them to sniff their surroundings. The mental enrichment dogs receive helps them relax, meaning they return home more tired than if they’d been running around all day.
It allows them to communicate
A dog’s sense of smell is much stronger than a human’s. That’s why the police often utilize sniffer dogs to track down suspects or evidence during an investigation. This sense is so strong that these animals typically use it as a form of communication, which is why you should embrace it. From identifying whether or not a dog is familiar to letting other canines know that they’re not a threat, a few sniffs can say a lot. It may be a little embarrassing if your pet goes around sniffing another dog’s behind, but there’s more happening here than you may realize. Just let the animals do what they need to do and don’t punish them for it. Otherwise, it could have a detrimental impact on their ability to communicate and make them afraid to do something that just comes naturally to them.
It’s a less stressful activity
The dog park can seem like a great place to take your pet. After all, it’s somewhere that they’re free to run around and use up all that additional energy. However, while one dog may enjoy their time here, another may find it stressful. Just as people sometimes struggle with social interactions, our canine companions can also have difficulty with this. They may find a dog park overly stimulating or frightening if they have a negative experience with someone else’s pet. That’s why it’s always better to prioritize a walk with lots of sniffing over a trip to this place. If your sole intention is to wear your dog out, this is the best way to do it without stressing them out.
A slow walk with a lot of stopping and starting might not seem like a ton of fun to you. However, if you want what’s best for your dog, this could be the way to go. By letting their nose control the pace and direction of the walk, you’ll ensure that they always enjoy their time outside with you.