You stroll through the park with the pram in the best weather and your four-legged friend trots along next to the pram on a sagging leash – what a nice idea. This scenario does not have to and should not remain a mere thought, after all, it could save you a lot of stress. Here we give you tips for successfully walking your dog and child.
As you might have guessed: walking on a leash plays a central role in relaxed walks, whether with or without a pram. In order for the dog to know how to walk correctly, it must first have learned it. If you are not yet able to walk on the leash, start the training in peace, first in the house without distractions, later in the garden, and only then on the street. You might also arrange a few training hours with a professional dog trainer who, with many years of experience, can support and guide you during the training.
Once your dog knows what you want from him, you can include the stroller (preferably without the child at first) in your training.
Dog and Stroller
In order for a relaxed atmosphere to prevail during the daily walk, your dog must not be afraid of the stroller. If that’s the case, it’s important that you take a few steps back and start positively associating with the stroller. This should be something great for the dog, after all, it is usually the reason why it goes outside into the countryside! Don’t overwhelm your four-legged friend by asking them to walk very close to you. If he’s still spooked by the vehicle, it’s perfectly fine for him to keep a little further away, as long as he doesn’t start to pull or get very distracted.
If your dog walks on your left side on normal walks, he should also walk there when you push the stroller. Make sure you’re paying attention and applauding the right behavior. Keep the training sessions short enough so that it is best not to lead to misconduct that you would have to correct. Remember: your dog learns from success! That’s why it would be great if your husband, parents, or parents-in-law would watch over your child at the beginning so that you don’t get thrown in at the deep end when you go for a walk together. So you can go separately and give your child and your dog your undivided attention when you are out with them.
Important: No matter how well your dog later walks on the leash, never attach the leash directly to the stroller. Unforeseen events can always occur. Your dog could get frightened, jump on the leash and pull the stroller with it. So always keep the leash in your hand to avoid such accidents.
Where’s the Relaxation in That?
Good preparation is half the battle! After consistent training, the four-legged friend would now be ready to go. All that’s missing is your child and good order. Think in advance what you will need during the walk and where you will put these things in order to have them ready to hand in the shortest possible time. Feel free to plan a longer lap so that you can take breaks that bring relaxation. It makes sense to choose the route in such a way that your dog can romp extensively and release pent-up energy in a suitable place. After all, going for a walk should not only mean training for him but also playful and fun. In addition to walking well on a leash, your dog also needs balance in a suitable place in order to be allowed to be a real dog. Depending on how your child allows you, you can also throw or hide your four-legged friend’s favorite toy and then let him bring it back. It will be much easier for your dog to walk relaxed next to the stroller when it is busy.
In between, you can also head for a park bench to take a break. Let your dog lie down and when it calms you more, tie the end of the leash to the bench. So you can take care of your child in peace or enjoy the peace and quiet. If your four-legged friend still has problems with waiting or relaxing, you can pack a chew for him in case of such a break. Chewing will help him shut down and will immediately link the break to something positive.
It will take some time before a well-rehearsed process develops that suits everyone best. But when the time comes, it is something particularly nice to be out and about together with your dog and child, as if you were dreaming of it, stress-free!