Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Why a tired dog is a good dog

Liam is a very tired dog
On most days, I take Liam for two walks. I take him out in the morning before I sit down to work, and I take him out again in the evening, when I am done working for the day (and writing this blog). Sometimes, people ask me why Liam needs so many walks. I think some people worry that I walk this little pug too often and I am going to wear him out. Perhaps this blog entry will convince them that two walks per day are truly needed.

Liam didn't get a walk in Monday morning, because I was tired and I wanted to sleep in. At the end of that Monday, Liam became a wild man. All of his energy had to go somewhere. He threw his toys around. He ran laps downstairs, he dug at his beds. And, he seemed to "forget" his commands, which meant that he also became just slightly disobedient.

Living with a dog like this isn't fun, of course, especially if you want to get any work done. But it also can't be all that much fun for him, either. He seemed stressed out and worried and just a little bit out of control.

After two walks per day, and a long training session, Liam is able to rest and relax. He plays with his toys, but he doesn't seem quite so frantic about it. He's also able to sit nicely and listen to me type, without becoming a whirling mess. We're both a bit happier.

Making time to train and exercise a dog isn't always easy. But here's my take on it.

When Liam hasn't had a suitable amount of exercise, I spend a lot of time either scolding him or correcting him. I have to watch him and mind him and corral him. I also have to clean up after the messes he makes. That's time-consuming too, and it's not very fun.

In my mind, I spend the same amount of time in either scenario. So why not do things we both find enjoyable? To me, it just makes a lot more sense.

So go ahead. Get out there with your pet! When the end of the day comes and you can both get in some epic snoozing, it'll all be worthwhile.