Dog Walking Etiquette in a Big City... Here's What You Need to Know!

Updated: May 27

Whether you’re living in the heart of Orlando or another city with crowded pavement, it’s important to make sure you are providing your pet with plenty of exercise. That’s why you need to be fully equipped with knowledge of basic etiquette while making your way downtown with your furry friend(s)! We put together a list of the best practices for walking your dog in big cities.


1. Always Clean Up After Your Pet

This should be the most obvious rule, but still worth adding to the list! Many big cities now have stations scattered throughout town that are equipped with free baggies to grab as well as trash bins for discarding. If your city doesn’t have these, a good rule of thumb is to ensure you are stocked up with plenty of baggies for picking up your dog’s business in case multiple “stops” are needed. Cleaning up after your pet takes less than 30 seconds and reduces the risk of somebody stepping in their “business,” so please make sure you are doing so!


2. Ask Before Approaching

Your dog could be the sweetest, most loving, and friendly dog in town, but that doesn’t mean another dog is the same way! To avoid any potential walk disruptions, make sure you ask the walker before introducing your dog. It can be easy to assume that all dogs are friendly, especially as dog lovers. But, you never know! The dog may have an aggressive nature, the owner could be in a hurry to get home, or they could even be a service dog. Always ask!


3. Keep Close & Lead the Way!

Maintain your leader role with your dog by guiding them and keeping them closeby. When sharing crowded sidewalks, you want to make sure you aren’t creating traffic jams for fellow pedestrians trying to walk by. Additionally, leading your dogs will reinstate obedient behavior and make walks more enjoyable for both you and your dog! This practice prevents your dog from pulling you down the street, lunging at other pedestrians, eating scraps, and seeing themselves as the pack leader.


4. Stay on the Leash

There are many reasons to keep your dog on your leash. First of all, most states have some sort of law regarding keeping your dog on a leash, outlawing loose dogs, or applying leash requirements to certain locations (beaches, parks, etc.) More importantly, you should leash your dogs in the interest of their safety. If you’re walking through a major city, chances are you’re sharing the streets with cars and buses! Having them on a leash will prevent them from getting into any life-threatening accidents. Additionally, keeping your dog on a leash teaches them obedience, prevents the spread of disease, and keeps your dog from invading the space of others.


5. Pay Attention To Your Surroundings

We know sometimes things come up, but do your best to put away the distractions

until after the walk, especially in the city! You don’t want your dog lunging at another passerby while you’re texting back your friend, or accidentally crossing the path of a biker and causing an accident. It will also give you both some bonding time! Win-win.


For those of you living in a large city with your dogs, we hope you find these tips helpful for walking through urban areas while also being a good neighbor. Now, go get those doggie bags & a sturdy leash, and take your pup for a walk!


Sources:

https://www.suzannespiegoski.com/maq-and-suz-blog/2016/7/7/5-tips-on-dog-walking-etiquette-in-a-big-city

https://www.broomfield.org/DocumentCenter/View/1327/Top10ReasonsToLeashYourDog?bidId=

https://www.animallaw.info/intro/dog-leash-laws

https://eastsideanimalhospital.com/dog-walking-etiquette/


Hunter's Pet Sitting owner and her dogs, Kona & Shea, keeping a close eye out for other dogs and following dog walking etiquette.

This post was written by Kelsey Kryger.

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