Indoor Dogs vs. Outdoor Dogs: All Votes are “In!”
It’s time for some insightful information from the esteemed resident canine, Jessie! I hope you are all enjoying a great start to the week! As we are quickly approaching the month of May and the weather beckons one and all to go outside, I wanted to share a little bit of information about outdoor dogs vs. indoor dogs. Sure, in some places where the weather is mild year-round, owners may find themselves keeping their dogs outside for appreciable amounts of time…but do dogs thrive better staying outside or spending most of their time inside?
I did some research at everydayhealth.com and was surprised by the answer. One might assume that outdoor dogs get more exercise, are happier and develop their skills as guard dogs. However, in reality, being an outdoor dog is not all it’s cracked up to be. In fact, some might consider it to be a form of abandonment.
Dogs are social creatures and we crave attention. If we are left outside, the only territory we have to “protect” is the pen and to be honest, we will probably spend most of our time just waiting for you to come out and play with us. We won’t spend hours running around the yard like you would like to believe.
Further, keeping a dog outdoors poses some risks to your pet. For example, he can escape and face danger in the form of traffic, poisoning or negative encounters with other animals. He can develop chronic health issues from prolonged exposure to the cold or heat.
Outdoor dogs can present with more behavioral problems, too, such as barking, digging, escaping and becoming highly aggressive. These issues make training them more challenging.
Sure, dogs need to be outdoors to get exercise, but the best way to do that is to go outside with them. Go to the dog park. Take a walk together. And if you do leave your dog outside for short periods of time, make sure you provide a safe, escape-proof shelter with plenty of shade and fresh water. Please never chain your dog. And if your dog has a heavy coat, think how you would be affected wearing a heavy coat while out in the heat for an extended period of time. Not fun…and dangerous. Likewise, dogs with short coats do not withstand the cold weather very well.
Just food for thought…besides, isn’t it great to know your pet is happier being close to you?