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Outdoor Exercises/Games on walks

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hi folks,


we've got a great 1 year old b/c who 90% of the time is attentive but occasionally if we are in a busier area or a park we can see he loses focus and is vulnerable to charging after others with a ball. 


I'm looking for more bits and pieces of activity to keep him occupied while out on a hike or a big walk, we do a lot of leg weaves, directions and circles, but haven't really had much success engaging him in scent work etc when outside, as he's very play focused, so we are looking for activities that would lean into that



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First, do you keep our dog on a leash? I do highly recommend that you do, under all circumstances unless in an enclosed dog park. Especially if he is charging after others.

Next, I am not sure why you feel the need to keep him occupied with play games or directions when you are on a long hike or walk. Is there a reason he cannot just walk or trot along and smell things and so on?  When I hike with dogs, I take it as a chance for them to be just dogs, and have fun. No need to engage them all the time. Of course, I keep them leashed as well.

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I'd simply train 'look at me', reward, then keep walking. Every single time he starts to focus on another dog or person, you say, 'look at me'. 

For right now he should be learning that you are the center of his world. That includes walking along calmly, sniffing when he wants to sniff. Stopping for a minute to sniff more intently. I wouldn't do anymore than walk with him. Training in games or learning directions are best done separately. Walks are for exercise and relaxation. And at the same time, teaching him that the Human is always in charge. If I were training anything, I'd be training a recall, but not every walk. Just every now and then.

Ruth & Gibbs

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