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  • Writer's pictureLiz MacHaffie

Sniffaris: Decompression for your dog

Your dog needs a chance to stop and smell the roses. (And the bushes and the grass and the dog pee...) So often, walks are about going somewhere at a human's pace. Sniffaris are all about letting your dog lead the way and set the pace.

These are a great way to help your dog with:

  • Exercise

  • Mental stimulation

  • Destressing!

How to take your dog on a Sniffari

  • Choose an open park, woods, quiet trail, or grassy area near your home. The less traffic (vehicular and canine), the better!

  • Place your dog on a long, light leash and the equipment you’re okay with him pulling on.

  • Let him walk around and sniff and explore to his heart’s content!

  • This is dog-directed, so (mostly) he gets to make choices about where to go and what to do. Want to sniff that grass patch for two minutes? Great!

  • Be mindful of any potential dangers or triggers for your dog. Long leashes are great for freedom, and they require a little more vigilance for humans. (For dogs with reactivity or fear, you may need a shorter leash. That's okay! You can do this on a short leash, too.)

  • Where practical, resist the urge to train your dog. This is his time to do what he wants.

Making Sniffaris a regular part of your dog's life can be stress-reducing for both of you!

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