Bulldogs are lazy and stubborn, but they do like their exercise… occasionally. They do like going on walks… occasionally. So when is the best time to take your bulldog for a walk? That’s hard to say.
Kafka the bulldog will always claim to want to go for a walk. Seriously. He may nap pretty much all day, but if he even hears me mutter the word “walk” in the middle of a sentence, he jumps off the couch so fast, you wouldn’t believe that he was just soundly sleeping. He’ll run around in excitement as I grab his harness and leash. He’ll pull me to the door to scurry out on his walk.
But does all that mean he really wants to go for a walk?
Not necessarily. Often we’ll go outside, and he’ll just stop. He’ll plant himself on the ground and refuse to budge. For no reason at all, at least not that I can tell.
That said, there are definitely some factors that will affect whether our bulldog will go on a walk or not.
Temperature. Anything above 50 degrees: too hot; he’ll be panting before we go the length of one house. Anything below 40 degrees, too cold (yes, even if he’s wearing booties or a sweater; trust me, in the beginning of our bulldog owning years, we tried). So between 40-50 degrees, you just might get an agreeable bulldog who wants to walk.
Number of distractions. For our bulldog, this matters. Are there lots of dogs outside? Landscapers working on yards? Road work? Yeah, he won’t be a fan of any of it, and, more often than not, it’ll just lead to him barking rather than walking.
Who’s going on the walk? This is new for Kafka the bulldog. When we lived in the city, he had no issues with walking with the kids. Now, out in the suburbs, it’s a different story. Maybe it’s because they’re zooming on their bikes and scooters, rather than walking, but he likes to hang back. He takes his time, which always forces me to yell after my kids to slow down. Then again, if it’s just me and him – like when the kids are at school — he’s more inclined to go for a walk with me.
The commands he knows… or at least the commands he chooses to listen to. Are all bulldogs as stubborn as Kafka? Kafka knows “Kafka, walk.” He knows, “Kafka, kiss” (when I put my hand down and ask him to touch his snout to my fingers). He knows, “Kafka, let’s go.” But does he always listen? Heck no. Because bulldogs are a stubborn breed.
So the last factor? Mood. At the end of the day, or the beginning of the walk as it may be, it may come down to whether or not the pooch is willing to take a walk. He may be super excited when he hears the word “walk,” but he just might not be in the mood either.
That said, my favorite season to take Kafka the bulldog on a walk is the Fall. Why?
Because of one of Kafka’s favorite words: “leaves”! I say “Kafka leaves,” and he jumps to attention. He loves chasing leaves down the sidewalk as I kick them up into the air.
That is, literally, the only way I can guarantee my bulldog will go on a walk.
Have any fun stories about attempting to take your bulldog for a walk, or another stubborn pooch? I’d love to hear them in the comments below.