At what point do you stop your dog from doing this, and force him hurry along with you?
I think everyone will have a different point of view on this. Some may say that I’m the boss and when his bladder is empty, he shouldn’t be allowed to sniff and pee. I don’t quite agree with that.
When I take Guinness on a run with me, I do it because we both enjoy it. For me, I enjoy spending time in his company, and I feel a little safer running alone with a big black dog beside me. For him, it’s an outing, and a chance to run a bit further than just around our backyard.
One part of meeting any animal’s needs is allowing them the opportunity to express their natural behaviours. You may have heard about environmental enrichment in zoos? Well, that’s all about providing ways in which monkeys can swing and climb, and polar bears can play and swim in icy cold water.
It’s very normal behaviour for male dogs to want to urinate on things. I feel that if I stopped Guinness from doing this, it would stop him expressing his natural behaviours, and make the run less enjoyable for him. Since I want both of us to have a good time, I tend to let him lift his leg when he wants to. Yes, it means I have interruptions, but when I want to do some serious training, I can easily leave him behind. Besides, sometimes a brief stop to let him pee is very much appreciated by my tired legs.
I’d love to know your thoughts? Do you run with a male dog who feels the need to prove ownership of every twig? How do you handle it?