Puppies First Walk

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Dreya walk

After what seems like forever since first bringing your puppy home the time has finally come for their first walk. It’s tempting to go full steam ahead and take them to somewhere really fun like the beach but is this the best option and how do you prepare for your pup’s first walk?


There is lots you can be doing at home before your puppy is able to go out on walks. Firstly, you can get them used to the equipment they will wear when going out on a walk.

  • Collar/harness
    • Wearing a collar or harness can initially feel very strange for your puppy so it’s good to get them used to it in a very positive way. 
      • At home start with the collar as they tend to be easier to put on than a harness, although even this can be a challenge with a young, wriggly puppy that seems to be all teeth! A good way to do this initially is using a little distraction such as dropping a few tiny treats on the floor for your puppy to eat whilst you pop the collar on. To begin with leave the collar on for very brief periods and don’t leave them unsupervised with their collar on.
      • Once they are happy and relaxed having their collar on if you will be using a harness you should start to get them used to wearing that in the house/garden. As with the collar don't leave the harness on when puppy isn't supervised. With a lively puppy that is likely to pull, a harness is a good option as it means they aren’t pulling on their neck. With my own puppies I mainly use a collar but we will do a LOT of training in the house and garden prior to going out on a walk. Before trying to put the harness on make sure you understand exactly how it fits as this can be tricky to start with. 
  • Lead
    • To teach your dog to walk nicely on the lead a soft (So, it’s comfortable for you to hold - always important!) flat lead is ideal. I wouldn’t recommend using an extending lead to teach your puppy to walk nicely on the lead as they are bulky to hold and can be tricky to manage. When buying a lead make sure it is appropriate for the puppy you have. For example if you have a small puppy you don’t want a really bulky, heavy lead. 
    • Once your puppy is used to wearing their collar/harness in the house/garden start to practice with the lead attached. Keep these sessions very short to start with and your aim is to maintain a loose lead. You can do this using treats to keep your puppy focused on you - read our ‘Who walks who’ blog for tips on getting started with your loose lead walking.
  • Carrying your puppy
    • Before your puppy is fully vaccinated you can begin to accustom them to different sights and sounds by carrying your puppy places and letting them watch and listen from a safe distance.
  • ID tag
    • When out and about it is a legal requirement that your puppy has a collar or ID tag with your surname and address on. I’d also recommend including a contact telephone number.

The big day

It’s the big day, so where should you go? When should you go? Does it really matter? 

Even for a confident puppy the first walk can be daunting, so I’d take them to a place where there aren’t too many distractions and at a time when it is fairly quiet. So, I wouldn’t take my puppy for their first walk down to the beach on a Sunday morning when it is likely to be very busy. For me, I always begin with walking them round the estate that I live on. I make sure I have plenty of treats and lots of time, so they can get used to the new sights, sounds and smells (Even if you have carried your puppy places it is very different when they are walking along rather than being higher and cuddled into you). Allow enough time for your puppy to sniff and explore their new surroundings. Use your treats to reward your puppy for loose lead walking - just the same as you’ve been doing in the garden.


Meeting people and dogs

We all know it is important to socialise our puppies, but that doesn’t mean that they should meet every person and dog that you see. When meeting other dogs it is vital that the other dog is calm and good with puppies to ensure your puppy has a positive experience. If you aren’t sure what the other dog is like then keep a distance and reward your puppy for looking at them but not interacting with the dog. 

You also want your puppy to be relaxed amongst lots of different people, but also to remain focused on you and not wanting to go up to everyone that they see. So, let them interact with some people, but just keeping them walking past others.

If you are struggling with any aspect of puppy training email, call (Tel: 07879422131) or WhatsApp me (07879422131).

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