Some puppies are sometimes just like human babies in some ways, especially when they want to be carried on walks. But why is that?
Lemme help you.
By the way, here is the short answer.
Your puppy may want to be carried on walks because of reinforcing negative behaviors, health issues, poor socialization, tiredness, laziness, and uncomfortable gear. Giving proper socialization, making a proper exercise schedule, providing comfortable gear, consulting a veterinarian are solutions.
Does carrying your puppy on walks is something inappropriate? What are the consequences? Then, what should you do? Read this helpful article to resolve those matters.
Should you carry your puppy on walks?
You don’t necessarily need to carry your puppy on walks. However, there’re some circumstances where you have to carry them.
1. If the puppy is unvaccinated.
Puppy parents should be aware that puppies need to be vaccinated at least the first two core shots before 12 weeks of age.
If not, those puppies cannot walk outside on their own as they can be exposed to many deadly diseases, especially including Parvovirus.
So, puppy parents tend to carry their puppies on walks since those puppies are not vaccinated. So, if your puppy is not vaccinated, carrying your puppy or using a doggy stroller is safer on walks.
2. When the puppy seems tired.
Sometimes the walking session is just too much for your puppy. If your puppy seems tired, you should carry her.
So, You should be able to understand if your puppy is tired. Don’t worry. We’re gonna discuss that and many more important facts later in this article.
3. When the puppy has certain health issues.
If you know that your puppy has certain health issues, especially including Arthritis, Hip dysplasia, you should carry her on walks. We will discuss more this under the next subtitle.
So, let’s head over to the next subtitle.
Why does your puppy wants to be carried on walks?
In the earlier section, we’ve discussed why you should carry your puppy on walks. But, here, we will look into why your puppy wants to be carried on walks.
1. Reinforcing negative behaviors.
As I mentioned earlier, puppies are just like human babies in some ways. Although the learning rate is lower than human babies, puppies also learn pretty fast.
What would you do in a case where your puppy does a positive thing. Say, for example, your puppy responds perfectly to the recalling. What happened next?
You give her treats, a lot of cuddles, and carry her.
In this particular case, you’re using the positive reinforcement technique to reinforce her recalling. What are the rewards? Obviously, treats. Yes. But what are the others?
Carrying and cuddling are also great rewards for them.
Fun fact:- In fact, many researches done over the last few decades have proven that including this research article that cuddling a dog is a far more effective way to reinforce positive behaviors in dogs than treats. The above-linked research article has used the oxytocin level as a main parameter to conduct the study. Have you ever wondered why police dogs are not rewarded with treats?
So, if you carry the puppy and cuddle whenever she is not walking, you’re inadvertently reinforcing the “now walking” behavior.
So, this is something important to consider.
2. It could be a health issue.
If your puppy always wants to be carried on walks, watch out, folks! It can be caused by a number of internal health issues, making your puppy find it difficult to walk.
Here are some common health problems that make it difficult for puppies to walk.
- Hip dysplasia..
- Paw injuries.
- Fibrocartilaginous Embolic Myelopathy.
- Intervertebral disc disease.
- Wobblers Syndrome
- Bone Disease
- Specific traumas that affect hind limbs.
- Paralysis infection
- Specific traumas that are affect the spinal cord.
Just check if the puppy stands on hind legs whenever she wants to defecate. Further, Check to see if she is limping as she walks.
If so, there is a high likelihood of suffering from at least one of the above health issues.
3. Lack of socialization.
If your puppy is begging you to carry on walks, that can be caused by a lack of socialization, especially during the critical socialization period, which is between the first 8-12 weeks.
Check if she freezes, gets down and walks real low, and hides in bushes whenever a car passes by. If yes, definitely the issue is with lack of socialization.
If your puppy walks halfway down of your regular walking sessions and doesn’t want to move further without carrying her, chances are she is tired.
Here are several signs of a tired puppy.
- Heavy panting.
- Going zoomies.
- Tend to nip or bite you.
- Ignoring the commands.
- Excessive lip licking.
- Slowing down on walks.
Yeah, that’s true. Even super enthusiastic puppies can be lazy. So, if your puppy is also lazy, she may want to carry her on walks.
Here are the common signs of laziness in puppies.
- Sleeping more.
- Significant weight gain.
- Recultance to exercise.
- Head tilting.
- Keeping ears drop always.
6. Issues with the leash.
If your puppy wants to be carried on walks, chances are she may not be used to the leash. Obviously, they are still puppies, and she doesn’t know much about the world.
Wearing a leash for the first time can be very strange or even scary for a puppy. Sometimes, an uncomfortable leash also can be a reason, maybe it’s too heavy, or the collar is tight to her neck.
7. The puppy is used to it.
If you have carried your puppy during the walking sessions until she turns about 12 weeks old, chances are she has gotten used to it.
We know that walking outdoors can be very dangerous for unvaccinated puppies. That’s why many dog parents carry their unvaccinated puppies whenever they go outside.
Especially if the owners cannot vaccine their puppies until the 12th week, they miss the very crucial period (8-12 weeks), which is extremely effective for puppy socialization.
So, this can be a reason why does your puppy wants to be carried on walks.
What should you do if your dog wants to be carried on walks?
Here are several essential things you should do.
1. Give proper socialization.
As I mentioned earlier, lack of socialization can be a significant reason why this happens. So, giving proper socialization is a must.
Here are some suggestions to socialize your puppy.
- Visit dog parks.
- Take the puppy to the mall with you.
- Car rides.
- Walk around the neighborhood.
- Play with her.
- Organize a family gathering.
- Take her to obedience classes.
2. Make an appropriate exercise schedule.
The walking session can be too much for your puppy, as we discussed earlier. That’s why she pulls breaks halfway down the walking session and why she needed to be carried till both of you arrive home.
So, discussing with your regular veterinarian in order to prepare an appropriate exercise after the necessary examinations is a must.
A good rule of thumb:- Increase the length of walking sessions by 5 minutes per month. Puppies can have such walking sessions up to twice a day. Example: ♦ A 2-month-old puppy can have two walking sessions a day, each session should last about 10 minutes. ♦ A 4-month-old puppy can have two walking sessions a day, each session should last about 20 minutes. However, when they are fully grown, they will be able to walk for a long time.
The puppy won’t be tired from walking sessions with an appropriate exercise schedule anymore.
3. Consult a veterinarian.
If your puppy wants to be carried on walks, consider consulting your regular veterinarian as soon as possible as it may indicate several health issues in puppies (As we discussed earlier)
4. Help them to get rid of laziness.
As I mentioned earlier, some puppies are lazy, resulting in them wanting to be carried even on joyful walking sessions.
Here are some suggestions to try out.
- Give them attention.
- Talk with the puppy and cuddle her.
- Engage in mental exercise.
- Play with her.
- Stick with a consistent daily routine.
- Provide an appropriate diet. (Of course, after consulting your veterinarian)
- Give toys, especially including chew toys like kong.
5. Make them walk.
If you are sure that there’s nothing wrong going on with your puppy (after consulting your veterinarian), take the puppy on a walk.
But, remember, here you should give them only an adequate amount of exercise.
Don’t forget to take some yummy treats with you. I guess watching a video is far more effective rather than reading text on how to encourage your puppy to walk.
So, consider watching the following video.
Moreover, ensure not to reinforce its refusal to walk.
6. Make her comfortable with the leash.
As I mentioned earlier, uncomfortable gear can be a reason why does your puppy wants to be carried on walks. Therefore, be sure to choose a lightweight leash and collar made from comfortable materials. Also, the design of the collar is also important.
In fact, you can try an appropriate puppy harness. One of the advantages of harnesses is that a harness can help you calm your puppy.
7. Consult a dog behaviorist.
If this issue seems beyond your control, consider consulting a dog behaviorist.
When should you stop carrying your puppy on walks?
If your puppy is fully vaccinated, there is no need to carry her on walks. But after the vaccinations, be sure to stay for the time recommended by the doctor.
If she is 9-10 weeks old, I will stop carrying her on walks. If you give them only the right amount of exercise, they won’t beg you to carry on walks. Of course, I would love to pick my puppy up even he turns one year. But, here, I’m only referencing about walking sessions.
Things to be aware of.
Here’re some of the important things that every puppy parent should be aware of.
Do not force: If your puppy refuses to walk and wants to be carried, don’t force her to walk. Instead, use training methods to encourage her to walk.
Patience: You cannot expect anything overnight. It takes a considerable time for a puppy to learn new things. Yes, they learn fast. But it’s not as fast as you might expect. So, you gotta be extremely patient during the training process.
Vaccinations: Be sure to vaccinate your puppy on time.
Many puppy parents find it difficult to walk with their puppies as they want to be carried on walks. This can happen due to several reasons. In this article, we’ve discussed 7 reasons for that with possible solutions. Hope you found this helpful.