On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?
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Thread: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

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    On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    I have 2 APBT's 9 and 7 months old. They are the first 2 dogs I've owned since I was a child so I am certainly no expert . I almost always walk them together by myself. Like most dogs they love to sniff all the flowers, bushes, stop signs, fire hydrants, and everything in between.

    As the walk starts out they are usually distracted by numerous smells, especially the younger one . There's never any pulling but they can stop dead in their tracks when a smell catches their attention. Most of the time they ignore the spot after a quick, small correction. Further into the walk the desire to sniff gets less and less. The majority of the sniffing occurs when we walk on the sidewalk since that's where all the smells are. I often walk them in the street to avoid all the smells which helps greatly but it's not always the best option depending on the time of day considering traffic.

    I will add when I walk them separately they are much more concentrated on what I am doing and the stops to sniff are minimal. Another thing that may be related is when I walk them together they tend to walk a step in front of me side by side each other mainly because the sidewalk isn't wide enough for all 3 of us to walk side by side. When I walk them separately they naturally stay by my side.

    So basically, what is your general rule about stopping to smell the flowers ? And how can I at least cut down on the attempts to sniff ?

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    Senior Member BrittanyG's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    Try walking faster. I judge my pace by how often my dog sniffs. If I'm going too slow, he's not concentrating on walking, but all the smells.

    Dogs never bite me, just humans-Marilyn Monroe

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    Senior Member lil_fuzzy's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    I pretty much let her stop and sniff whenever she wants. It's her walk, so why not. On some walks she keeps stopping every few metres tho, and then I tend to walk a bit faster, but I still let her occasionally stop and sniff stuff. Unless it's a dead animal or poo, because that's icky and I tell her to leave it and come on and she does.

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    Senior Member LuvMyAngels's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    It depends on why we're out. During his exercise walks, there's almost no sniffing. We're out to burn off some of his energy and walking slow enough for him to sniff every scent doesnt work well for that. At some point in each walk we usually end up somewhere that he's allowed to sniff around and I tell him "go sniff"...giving permission to slow down and I follow him around for a bit. After a while we go "back to work" and return to our walk.

    We make a living by what we get but we make a life by what we give

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    Senior Member amdeblaey's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    When I start my walk out-they are in a heel, and paying attention to me. If they do good for 50 feet, I let them loose leash, but I don't stop if they sniff. If I have to tug on them, then it's back to heel. They can sniff and walk at the same time.

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    Senior Member Keechak's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    we don't go for walks often but when we do it's just to get away from the house so I allow them to sniff as much as they want but I will intervene if they start licking the spot they are smelling.

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    Senior Member sassafras's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    As long as they are not dragging me towards what they want to sniff, I am not actively practicing a skill that requires their attention on me, and it is not so often that it annoys me... I pretty much let them do their doggie thing and sniff as much as they want.

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    Senior Member theyogachick's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    Gracie and I have a system. She walks half teh walk with no sniffing and she gets to sniff on the way back, but she has to earn it (in other words, do well on the first half). It works out pretty well. Even when she does sniff, we keep moving and she sniffs and walks.
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    Senior Member Tankstar's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    Depends.

    If Im doing a "lazy" no speed walk ya. If we are walking some where (such as to my job) no. Although he is rarley leashed up when we are out, so he can sniff all he wants, as long as he keeps up with me.

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    Senior Member agility collie mom's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    When we walk no sniffing going to the park, sniffing in the park, no sniffing going home. (Since we walk busy streets to get to the park and back.)
    "Dogs are our link to paradise. They don't know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring--it was peace." - Milan Kundera

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    Senior Member moluno's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    Depends. If she is walking by my side and sniffing as we walk, then I let her sniff as much as she wants. But I don't let her pull me towards a scent and I don't let her stop the walk just to sniff something (that isn't to say she doesn't still try, though). Otherwise, we have a couple designated sniffing spots picked out, so if she's been well behaved on the walk we will stop there and I tell her to go sniff, and I let her use all 6ft of the leash.

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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    do you want a controlled kind of walk or a anything goes walk? for controlled walks, the less sniffs the better... if your dog starts sniffing, try walking in small circles... this will help redirect your dog's concentration back to you.

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    Senior Member sassafras's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    Allowing sniffing is also nice to use as a reward on a walk.

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    Senior Member FlashTheRottwuggle's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    If we are on a "lazy" walk, I let them sniff all they want. If my time to walk them is limited (like in the AM before work), I don't allow the sniffing as I want to put some distance in and tire them out.

    Most of the time, Colt is all about the walk and only occasionally wants to sniff something. Flash would spend the whole day sniffing if she had her way (oh that beagle nose! ). So most of the time when Colt wants to sniff, we stop and they both get to sniff, otherwise Colt and I keep Flash moving.
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    For urban walks ... the dogs always pee and poop at home first, THEN we go for a walk.
    And walk is all we do. No stopping, no sniffing, no marking, no peeing, no pooping, no pulling etc, it's casual loose-leash "by me" type walking. We think of it as a mission, to get to point B.
    If it happens to be a long-ish walk, I will give them a break part way through, to pee or poop if required, or just to have a mental break and a drink of water.

    I balance out the regimented urban walks by occassionally taking the dogs for a remote-area bush walk.
    On bush walks, I use no leashes, and I say absolutely nothing to the dogs. I feel the entire purpose is it's THEIR time ... they certainly don't need me chastising them, barking out verbal commands, or imposing ANY expectations on them. So they're free to do whatever they want ... forge, lag, sniff, pee, dig, wander, play, romp, swim .... just go ahead, and BE A DOG

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    Senior Member doginthedesert's Avatar
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    Re: On walks, how often do you let your dogs stop and sniff ?

    We use stopping to sniff as a reward for walking good as well. For instance, we walk 10-15 minutes to the park, then once we get there he really wants to stop and sniff these posts. If he pulls towards a post, I don't stop. Once he is walking calmly on a loose leash I stop and sit by a post and let him sniff around for a few minutes. Once he is done we go walking again, and when we come around to the posts or his favorite tree we stop to sniff if he is walking calmly and not pulling like crazy to them.

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