When it's time to venture forth on an evening stroll with your canine bestie, don't go gentle into that good night. Go prepared. Follow these four tips for staying safe while walking your dog after the sun goes down.
Stay Leashed Up
You keep a white-knuckled grip on the leash when passing a squirrel on your morning stroll, but at night you may never see the raccoon sparking your pup's interest. Regardless of how well trained your dog is off leash, night jogs are no time to tempt fate. Stay in control with a reflective body harness, and if using a retractable leash, keep it locked.
Thanks to some pretty fascinating ocular evolution, dogs see better than humans at night, but distracted drivers certainly don't. In addition to outfitting your dog with a reflective vest, switch the Link GPS Dog Tracker LED light on. A tap on your smartphone turns your running buddy into your favorite, slobbering flashlight that can be seen by approaching vehicles.
Know Your Path
By day those stones on your favorite path are crucial for crossing the mud that accumulates after rain, but in low light the whole thing can be one big, sloppy tripping hazard. The trail you think you know can be treacherous in the evening, so stick to hard, even surfaces and leave exploration for daylight hours.
It Starts With You
As much as it feels like the two of you are partners in crime, your dog depends on you every step of the way. If you don't take basic precautions to protect yourself while jogging or walking with your dog at night, you may put Rover in a tight spot. Follow the same basic safety rules you'd adhere to if you were alone, and never leave for an evening dog walk without ID, your own reflective gear, and a charged cell phone. Lose the headphones on night runs so you can stay focused and aware.