Tips on how to make a walk more bearable?

(17 Posts)
ellajayne Tue 30-Apr-13 22:50:39

Now the weather is nicer (fingers crossed it stays that way) I'm taking the dog out for an hour and a half walk every day. We walk minutes to the field, half a mile more into the big park area where she goes off lead and all the way back. The round trip is around 5-6 miles every day so plenty of exercise for a one year old Labrador.

The problem is that I find the walks so boring. There's only one real route to the park and back and she's not a fetch and retrieve kind of dog. She just likes to run and explore more than anything.

Any tips apart from the health benefits for us both to enjoy it more? I find I dread the hour and a half out.

tabulahrasa Tue 30-Apr-13 22:59:45

What does she like playing?

Can you hide things for her to find? Or hide and seek. Even just suddenly running off in a different direction to confuse your dog is fairly amusing. grin

I train while I'm out, recall practise, wait, stay, sit and down at a distance.

Find somebody to walk with?

Um...would it help any to know that my poor dog can't walk for more than 20 minutes on a good day and I'm desperate to let him run about and explore? Or is that just irritating? Lol

FragileTitanium Wed 01-May-13 06:52:13

Take your ipod and download loads of funny/interesting podcasts so you can listen. Suddenly, having an hour to listen to something you find great feels like a luxury. You'll still be able to hear/talk to your dog and it'll be a treat for yourself. Also, take a thermos with some proper coffee - walking along with a cup of coffee is also nice. Take a bit of planning -but it's planning for you, so you are treating yourself, which you probably deserve being so devoted as to take your dog out for so long each day...

Judyandherdreamofhorses Wed 01-May-13 07:11:00

How about a route that involves some swimming, or are you stuck with this route?

I second finding someone to walk with. Two of my walks are with different friends and their dogs. I do, however, have a baby and a 3 year old, so my walks are never peaceful dull.

My springer, now 2 years old, only started wanting to chase and retrieve a year ago. Now he's a complete ball addict. I don't remember the transition. It might be worth you trying balls again?

fishybits Wed 01-May-13 07:14:45

I listen to audiobooks and try to walk a different route every day even if it means driving somewhere.

idirdog Wed 01-May-13 07:47:25

Don't be bored on a dog walk you have the most willing companion with you.

Teach your dog to walk along tree trunks,
Weave through fence posts
Hunt for balls you have hidden
Jump over ditches
send your dog around trees and back to you
Play hide and seek
do some training with distractions around

Got to dash out now but there are loads of tricks games you can play to keep your dog and you interested

I always find if I have my music on, I enjoy walking so much more smile

Pusspuss1 Wed 01-May-13 08:05:38

Take your iPod and headphones with some music (or a story to listen to if you prefer). Makes boring exercise much more bearable!

Callisto Wed 01-May-13 13:09:13

Watch the changing seasons, look out for wildlife, make cloud pictures, power walk, plan your next holiday/party/room to redecorate? I quite often do pelvic floor exercises or buttock clenches when walking if I'm bored.

Dog walk is best part of the day. If at all possible, find alternative routes for at least two or three days a week. Try breaking up one long walk into two or three shorter walks. Do clicker training. Practice, practice, practice - heelwork, loose lead walking, down, stays, sits, etc. Rather than walking, how about running or cycling with your dog? Look up cani cross and bikejoring. Combine with geocaching?

I love watching birds, flowers, trees. You can't beat seeing a treecreeper or new cygnets, or the flash of a kingfisher. No music - I like to be aware of my surroundings.

ellajayne Wed 01-May-13 23:38:36

Thank you everyone.

Unfortunately I am stuck with this route as I don't have access to a car and this is the only dog friendly park. There is a river running alongside but it's down a very steep mud slide hill and she knows never to go near it off leas. Its a deadly river.

Training sounds like a great idea. DP stays home with the kids and vice versa so we have some time out for an uninterrupted walk with her each although DP is quite happy to jog and walk in intervals with her with music playing. I can't run to save my life.

She doesn't like any games so far. No finding things, retrieving things etc and I've tried since she was 8 weeks old. She just likes to sniff, saunter, bound then saunter again. She hates being on the lead so training on the lead will be stressful to do on a walk but at least it's a distraction grin

I'm downloading some audio books, new music and podcasts for tomorrow's walk and looking in to borrowing a bicycle. I'm not sure how she'd do next to one yet as she's a bit of a puller so I'm waiting until her lead training is back up to scratch before we dare.

1MitchellMum Thu 02-May-13 06:30:29

No music for me ... with all the dog thefts around these days I like to totally concentrate on the dogs. Used to walk in a group years ago which was good but I think that's too distracting. I love the dog walks each day (ok, perhaps less so when it's tipping down). Why don't the kids come out on walks with you?

ellajayne Thu 02-May-13 17:30:32

They do sometimes but it's a long way to walk for a 4 year old and a 2 year old who now shuns the buggy. On nice days we take them to play in the park there but they are also distractions and sometimes it's nice just to have to concentrate on me and the dog.

I hate it when people have earphones in and a dog off lead...they are usually distracted and don't notice my dog on her lead or hear me asking them to call their dog away. Then they get upset that my dog has had a go at theirs and I'm back to square one with her training sad

Same here, Thunder.

bevelino Sun 05-May-13 22:03:41

I listen to music or sit in the park and read while my dog charges all over the place. I look forward to walking my dog as it means I escape from my house and have some me time.

Grunzlewheek Wed 08-May-13 17:27:44

I just love watching my dogs enjoying themselves grin

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