Mandy, owner of the East Sussex branch of Animals at Home and dog behaviourist, explains what a pack walk is, why one might be beneficial to your dog and how to join one.
1. What is a pack walk?
A pack walk is a group of dogs and their owners walking together. Dogs can be on or off leash depending on where the walk is.
2. What are the benefits for the dog of going on a pack walk?
Pack walks are the most natural way for dogs to socialise and bond and feel secure with other dogs. It builds trust and therefore confidence in the dog and helps to keep them balanced.
3. Ideally how many dogs should there be in the pack?
A pack can be anything from one owner and their dogs to limitless amounts so there isn't really an ideal number.
4. Do the dogs have to be of a similar size and breed?
No, the only time we would consider excluding a dog from a pack walk is if it hasn't been previously socialised and therefore not ready to be immersed into a pack.
5. How do you know that the dogs will get along?
If there is any doubt that a dog won't get along with others, a prior assessment is always done to decide whether that dog can join the pack walk or whether it needs some rehab work first.
6. If a dog is nervous of other dogs, would a pack walk help?
If done in the right way with experienced pack walkers and well balanced dogs, yes. If the fear is intense then some rehab sessions prior to the walk may be needed and then the dog introduced slowly to a small pack and bu