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Training & Behavior

5 Ways to Make Your Dog's Walk More Productive

January 22, 2024 - 7 minute read by Natalie Bendinelli

Shutterstock 1399290365

Dog walks are not just about giving your furry friend some exercise; they can also be an opportunity to enhance your bond and stimulate your dog's mind. Making your dog's walk more productive involves incorporating activities that go beyond the usual stroll around the block. Here are five ways to make your dog's walk more enjoyable and beneficial for both of you.

One: Incorporate Mental Stimulation

While physical exercise is crucial, mental stimulation is equally important for your dog's overall well-being. Engage your dog's brain by incorporating puzzle toys or treat-dispensing gadgets during the walk. These toys can challenge their problem-solving skills and keep them mentally active. Scatter treats along the route or hide them in the grass to encourage your dog to use their nose and senses.

Clicker Training: A Positive Reinforcement Approach for Mental Stimulation

Introduce clicker training during your dog's walk to create a positive reinforcement environment. A clicker is a small handheld device that makes a distinct sound when pressed. Use the clicker to mark desired behaviors, followed by rewarding your dog with treats. This not only reinforces obedience but also engages your dog's brain as they associate the click with a positive outcome. Clicker training on walks enhances mental stimulation, making the entire experience both enjoyable and intellectually enriching for your furry companion.

Teach Basic Commands

A productive walk is an excellent opportunity to reinforce basic commands such as sit, stay, or heel. Use treats or praise as rewards when your dog successfully follows a command. This not only strengthens their obedience but also makes the walk more structured and enjoyable for both of you. Consistent training during walks can contribute to a well-behaved and responsive dog.

Two: Use Highly Motivating Rewards and Treats

A dog licking a person's hand

Utilizing highly motivating rewards and treats can significantly enhance the rewarding nature of your dog's walks.

Offering treats during the walk serves as positive reinforcement for desired behaviors, turning the outing into a rewarding experience for your furry companion. Choose treats that captivate your dog's interest and taste, making them eagerly anticipate each reward.

This not only strengthens your bond but also encourages good behavior and responsiveness. Treats become a powerful tool in creating positive associations with the walk, transforming it from a routine activity into an exciting and enjoyable adventure for your dog. The joy of receiving tasty rewards not only motivates your dog to stay engaged during the walk but also contributes to a positive and fulfilling overall walking experience.

Dr. Harvey's Treats: A Tasty Boost for Mental Agility

Enhance your dog's mental stimulation during walks with the addition of Dr. Harvey's treats. These delectable treats are not only delicious but also contribute to mental agility. Whether scattered along the route or hidden strategically, Dr. Harvey's treats engage your dog's sense of smell and encourage them to use their cognitive abilities, turning an ordinary walk into a flavorful and intellectually stimulating experience.

Hide-And-Seek with Chicken Hearts

Engaging your dog in a game of hide-and-seek with something super motivating like chicken hearts is a fantastic way to add excitement and mental stimulation to their routine. This activity not only taps into their natural instinct to hunt and forage but also provides a delicious reward. Begin by hiding small pieces of chicken hearts in various locations along your walk route or within a specific play area. Encourage your dog to use their keen sense of smell to locate the hidden treats. This game not only satisfies their cravings but also turns a simple walk into an interactive and enriching experience, reinforcing the bond between you and your canine companion.

Three: Vary Your Walking Route

Dogs thrive on novelty, and walking the same route every day can become monotonous for both you and your furry companion. To make walks more exciting, explore different neighborhoods, parks, or trails. Changing the scenery not only provides mental stimulation for your dog but also exposes them to new smells and sights, keeping their walks interesting and engaging.

Drive Somewhere New

Embark on a new adventure with your furry friend by driving somewhere new for your next outing. Break away from the familiar neighborhood routes and explore a different park, nature reserve, or pet-friendly area.

A change of scenery not only provides a fresh sensory experience for your dog but also adds an element of excitement to your journey together.

Take the time to research and discover dog-friendly destinations, ensuring a safe and enjoyable environment for both of you. Whether it's a nearby hiking trail, a dog park with open spaces, or a beach for some seaside exploration, driving somewhere new injects a sense of novelty into your routine and allows you and your canine companion to create lasting memories in uncharted territory.

Plan ahead and make sure to keep your dog comfortable with an orthopedic bed suitable for the car like the Big Barker SUV bed!

Try New Textures


Add excitement to your dog's walks by exploring different textures. Take detours through grassy areas, mud patches, or uneven terrain. Let your furry friend experience the diverse sensations under their paws. This not only provides a physical workout and strengthens their feet, but also engages their senses, enhancing mental stimulation. Incorporating various surfaces helps improve paw health, promotes better coordination, and adds an element of fun to your walks. So, don't be afraid to veer off the usual path—your dog's paws will thank you for the adventure.

Four: Enrich with Interactive Toys

Enhance your dog's walk by bringing along interactive toys. Whether it's a ball for a game of fetch, a frisbee for some airborne fun, or a tug-of-war rope, interactive toys add an extra layer of enjoyment to the outing. These activities not only provide physical exercise but also strengthen the bond between you and your canine companion. Select toys that are suitable for outdoor use and engage your dog's natural instincts, making the walk an entertaining and fulfilling experience for both of you.

Five: Incorporate Sniffing Time

Allow your dog to indulge in the joy of sniffing during walks. Dogs experience the world primarily through their noses, and dedicating time for them to explore scents enriches their sensory experience. Loosen the leash and let your pup take the lead, stopping occasionally to let them investigate intriguing smells. This not only provides mental stimulation but also allows your dog to feel more connected to their surroundings. Allowing sniffing time turns the walk into a sensory adventure, satisfying your dog's natural curiosity and making the outing more enjoyable for them.

A productive dog walk goes beyond simply covering distance. By incorporating mental stimulation, training, varied routes, interval training, and socialization, you can transform a routine walk into a fulfilling and enriching experience for your furry friend. These activities not only contribute to your dog's physical well-being but also strengthen your bond, making each walk a positive and enjoyable adventure for both of you.

About The Author

Natalie Bendinelli

Natalie Bendinelli is a writer and author, widely recognized for her deep passion for Great Danes. Having grown her social media presence with her brand Dear Danes as well as her website Hello Danes to over one million worldwide, she is grateful to be able to spread the word about her love and passion for Great Danes. With an extensive background in canine care and breed-specific knowledge, Natalie has established herself as a leading authority in the Great Dane community. Her expertise, coupled with her exceptional writing skills, has made her a sought-after resource for Dane enthusiasts worldwide!