As winter quickly approaches and the nights draw in, walking your dog during darker hours (morning or evening) becomes inevitable. For some owners it can be quite daunting to walk your dog in the dark, and for newer puppies it could be the first time they experience walking in the dark.
Here at Pets & Friends we have put together some of our top tips and advice on how to safely approach those darker dog walks.
It’s important to choose your route carefully, some of your regular haunts such as fields and woods may not provide adequate light for more treacherous ground, so it’s a good idea during early winter months to start a new, well-lit route so your dog can familiarise themselves with their surroundings.
Get Dressed Up!
Not quite fancy dress, but it’s important to stay visible when out walking during the darker hours. As well as the usual warm, comfortable clothing, we recommend investing in some hi-vis, reflective clothing for both you and your dog. If your dog isn’t a fan of coats, reflective leads and collars are a good alternative.
Light & Sound
If your route isn’t well lit, always carry a torch (head torches = free hands) so you have good visibility of your surroundings and your path. Having a torch will also make it easier for your dog to find you should they roam free for a while, or if you decide to play fetch or practise training.
If you don’t already do so, using a whistle during dark walks can also help you communicate with your dog, even in well-lit areas, dogs who roam free may like to explore a little further so having the whistle call will let them know where you are. A whistle is also handy to call out should there be any safety issues in less populated areas.
Winter walking isn’t all gloomy though, with the right precautions and equipment, outings with your dog during those darker hours can be a fun bonding experience.
If you have any queries about how to keep your pet calm, safe and comfortable during winter and party season, feel free to get in touch with one of our experts on email@example.com or via social media, or you can pop into your local store to speak to our trained staff members.