Sniff Is so Important to Your Dog During Walks

Sniff Is so Important to Your Dog During Walks
By giving your dog more opportunities to use their powerful sense of smell, they will undoubtedly enjoy their walk more. They will also be more stimulated, gain more choice and freedom, and, ultimately, be more tired and relaxed.

While humans are mostly visual creatures, dogs are all about smelling. They have millions of more olfactory sensors than humans do, and they even have an extra organ, the vomeronasal organ, on the roof of their mouth for processing smells. Their long snouts are ideal for reading “scent mail,” and they learn about the world by putting their nose to anything that seems interesting. Every tree, light pole, and pant leg is potentially covered in informative smells.
Sniff Is so Important to Your Dog During Walks
You can put your nose to the same tree your dog has been sniffing for the past minute and get nothing but a whiff of woodsy bark, but your dog picks up on a lot more. They can tell another dog recently passed through the area and approximately how long ago they were there. Not only that, they can tell the dog’s gender, what they like to eat, and what kind of mood they were in.

Sniffing Can Make Your Dog Feel Better
Some dogs can become over-stimulated when they do high energy level activities, but harnessing your dog's natural sniffing behavior is a calm and generally relaxing option.

A 2019 study published in the Applied Animal Behavior Science Journal even suggests that providing ample sniffing opportunities can make your dog feel more optimistic
Sniff Is so Important to Your Dog During Walks
Sniffing is Your Dogs Mental Self-care Program
Sniffing is used as a calming signal between dogs (Calming Signals In Dogs). Two friendly dogs that meet each other may signal their wish to not escalate the situation by spontaneous sniffing. A dog that feels uncomfortable in a training situation may turn away to sniff the ground, much to the dismay of the owner.

Dogs do not just communicate with each other that they are peaceful by sniffing, but also calm themselves down through it. A dog that feels nervous may often suddenly be extremely interested in the ground in front of him. It is an inbuilt mechanism to relax.
Sniff Is so Important to Your Dog During Walks
Sniffing Is an Important Part of Doggy Communication
Don't forget that sniffing is also a vital part of how your dog communicates. You may get frustrated when your dog wants to sniff every lamp post down the block, but they are usually just checking out the scent marks of another dog in the neighborhood. These scents will allow them to tell if the dog is a male or female if it is one they are familiar with, and whether they are in the near vicinity or not.

Owners can be embarrassed when their dog automatically gravitates towards sniffing another dog's butt when they first meet. For a dog, though, this is almost like an evaluative handshake. They are getting to know the other dog's distinct smell.
Sniff Is so Important to Your Dog During Walks
Sometimes sniffing can also be an appeasement behavior. If your dog is trying to diffuse a situation with another dog, they may begin to sniff the ground to let them know they are not a threat. By allowing your dog to do this rather than pulling them away, it can help to relax both dogs.
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