Part of my job as a designer (and hipster) is to spot trends. And with spring, springing, I’ve noticed an increasing number of dogs out and about with their owners. I’ve also noticed that the owners aren’t very good at dealing with their canine companions or the little presents left behind. Of course, this isn’t the dog’s fault. Overworked and stressed out, the owners use the weekend as an opportunity to relieve themselves of the guilt for leaving Fido alone for 10 to 12 hours a day, trapped in a glass box 30 stories up, eating shoes, pooping everywhere and generally going batshit. (I know that’s how I feel after a week of the design industry.)
Fortunately, I spoke to local dog expert , Biba Bos, about what we can do to keep our dogs happy and healthy while maintaining the breakneck pace of modern life in the big city.
Says Bos, “No matter how many toys or treats you buy for them, they will go crazy if you do not meet their basic needs.”
A good workout is essential to a dog’s physical health. Just like for humans, a sedentary lifestyle can lead to all sorts of expensive yet completely preventable issues. Also, regular exercise will burn off the energy that would otherwise be spent on eating those new Jimmy Choos.
2. A Sense of Purpose.
For thousands of years, dogs were active participants in our daily lives, they helped manage our herds, kept us safe at night and provided companionship. Fast forward to lotusland in 2010 and you’ve got those same instincts for work, but no outlet for them. An unoccupied dog is a bored dog is a neurotic dog is a destructive dog is a dangerous dog is a dead dog.
Shutting in your pet for 80+ hours a week eliminates your dog’s ability to relate to its peers. So then when the weekend comes, your teacup chihuahua turns into an embarrassing version of Taz.
Regular interaction with other members of the species will go a long way towards making those weekend walks on the seawall far more pleasant for you and Rover.
So great, now you know, what your dog requires at the most basic level, but how can you implement these wonderful tips on a schedule as busy as yours? Outsource. It’s as simple as that.
Bos answers, “If you’re a busy person, hiring a professional dog walker is probably the best thing you can do for your dog. They know what they’re doing and by delegating the responsibility to them, you’re dealing with less stress for you and your pet.”
As a side note, how many VCB readers with dogs use the services of a professional dog walker?