The open spaces in which we can run are the biggest benefits of living in the country. In the country, life just seems healthier, and maintaining good health is easier. We also know that the benefits of living in the country can make it difficult to keep track of your pets. How can you watch over your dog in the country while still allowing him to roam freely? These are some of our favorites.
Walking and Hiking
You may be fortunate enough to live on an expansive piece of property. This means that your dog can run around freely. You should have surrounding properties that buffer yours so you won’t need to worry about the dog getting into trouble. You will still need to be cautious if you have a property that borders a highway.
You might consider installing invisible fencing (underground). You may not have to do anything extra if your dog can be taught to obey boundaries and to come to you when called. Some breeds can be more challenging to control than others. This is something you should consider. You can also walk your dog around the perimeter of the property every day if your dog has a tendency to be more distractible and active.
A state park or national park is a great addition to rural living. There are often paths and campsites for camping, running, or hiking in the parks or nearby. If your dog has a light coat and is properly outfitted with warm clothing, including booties (if it’s not too thick), they can join you on cross-country skis or snowshoes.
The Rivers, Lakes, and Creeks!
Dogs love the water, and they will dive into it if given the chance. Perfect if your dog has a breed that can swim! If your dog is a swimming breed, you can simply hike to the nearest pool and have a swim. You will have to equip your dog with a lifejacket when you take him near the water if he is the kind of dog that can sink. This includes bulldogs as well as greyhounds or basset hounds. Summertime is perfect for a game of fetch with either a ball or a floating stick. Keep an eye on your pet, regardless of whether or not he’s wearing a jacket.
Before swimming, you should take two precautions:
- Learn how to do CPR or artificial respiration in case your dog needs help in an urgent situation
- Familiarize yourself with the parasites that you might encounter in and outside of water. If your dog acts strangely following an excursion, seek medical attention.
Exercise with Your Working Dog
Like their owners, dogs who live on the farm spend much of the day tending to the soil. Country dogs, like suburban dogs, are part of their family, and they do many things, including herding cattle, protecting the home, retrieving items, hunting, carrying, etc. Exercise is a part of their daily lives, and they do not need time to exercise. Running through the forest once or twice per week is a fun way for your dog to relax from their workaday routine and spend some time alone with you.