You take your dog out for a walk... sometimes it can be difficult in the Winter weather, depending on the dog.  But you take  your dog out for a walk at least daily.  Now the founder of PETA, Ingrid Newkirk says you are probably walking your dog incorrectly... or at least not efficiently.

PHOTO: Laura Bradshaw

Here is what was actually described:

If you’re one of the roughly 44 percent of Americans who own a dog, chances are you’re familiar with the walking demands of your pooch. However, a simple walk around the neighborhood as a “bathroom break” isn’t going to cut it if you want to be a good companion to your dog, Newkirk claimed.  “It’s their walk, you know?” Newkirk said in an interview on Seattle’s Morning News with Dave Ross. “That’s a very special occasion for a dog, to be outside and to smell and to look. They don’t want to be stuck in a room all day with their legs crossed, hoping to go outside. It’s more than a bathroom break, it’s an excursion.

Ok.  It is a special occasion.  For the dog, at least.  But in this weather, let's be honest, most dogs (at least the little guys) don't really want to be out there any longer than is necessary.  I can always tell when the weather has warmed a bit, because my dog will want to be out there a bit longer, just sniffing around.  When it's cold outside, my dog will want to go inside as soon as possible, and sometimes sooner... like before he's done his "business". That isn't happening. So we both stand out there waiting.  Him staring at me like "why are you doing this to me"?

When it does warm up enough for a small dog to go for a decent walk, use a harness.  Not a collar.  It's a lot easier on their neck.  And I have learned that the hard way.  Poor thing was on some muscle relaxers for a bit when his neck was hurting him because I tugged.  Oops. Won't make that mistake again.

Here's to warmer weather that ALL dogs want to hang out in!

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