What do you carry in your walking bag when you walk an anxious dog?
There can be lots of things for us dog owners to remember on a dog walk - especially when walking an anxious or reactive dog. So a multi-functional dog walking bag is just what I need. Walking bags can come in a range of styles, and the one you choose is up to you, depending on the design you prefer, and what you find the most comfortable to carry. I have chosen a “Barking Bag” walking bag which has been especially designed to have a place to store everything for your walks. It is water-resistant too, a really handy feature if you're walking in the UK. So what have I filled mine with?
Firstly Poo bags and a Poop Porter. You are required by law to clear up after your dog in public areas and dispose of the bag in an appropriate bin. Every dog owner knows that it can be annoying and inconvenient to carry a used poop bag around until we find a bin or get home. Scooping the poop has to be the least pleasant aspect of owning a dog. Let's face it, no one enjoys it, even the best dog trainers haven't managed to train dogs to do it themselves. This is where My Anxious Dog Poop Porter comes in, simply clip it to the bag. To use, just slip the knot of the used poop bag through the large hole, and the Poop Porter will keep a hold of it for you, keeping your hands free for giving out those treats.
Water, another essential item. I always have a water bottle and a collapsible bowl. A portable dog bowl is a traveller's best friend, especially when it’s warm. Ours are attached to our bag with a carabiner clip.
Our lightweight muzzle from The Muzzle Shop is brilliant. This style is the lightest and most popular as it allows the dog to pant, drink and take treats. Bella is scared of being touched by strangers so if we suddenly find ourselves in a busy area I have her muzzle always with me which makes life so much less stressful.
I also carry a weather resistant LED safety light just in case I get caught out in the dark and I can easily just attach it to Bella’s collar to keep her visible and safe at night.
Bella’s lightweight raincoat fits into the end mesh pocket perfectly, again handy if we get caught out in a sudden downpour.
A dog whistle. Bella has been trained with a dog whistle so I always carry one for distance work.
A rubber ball, it can be a great way to motivate your dog. Virtually every dog out there loves playing with a ball, so use this power wisely. It’s a great way to get your dog’s attention and just as you would give them a treat for being good, playing fetch can also be used to instil good habits.
And finally treats an essential for food oriented anxious dogs. Every dog loves treats and it is a great way to help reinforce the positive behaviours you want from your dog.
As you can see we also have a lot of yellow on our walking bag. This is to show other dog owners that my dog is anxious and we need that all important space. All our dogs are different, it's their quirks that make them special. By wearing yellow you are giving your dog a helping hand by helping others to understand. I see a major difference when Bella wears her yellow. It creates awareness and educates and this has given both of us a greater confidence.