Exercise is so important for your dog’s physical and mental health. Not only will it keep your pet in shape, keep him mentally stimulated, and at a healthy weight for its breed and age, but regular exercise will also prolong the life of your dog.
Some of the many benefits to exercise include the reduction or elimination of behavioral problems such as digging, barking, chewing, and hyperactivity; keeping them healthy, agile, and limber; the reduction of digestive problems and constipation; building confidence in timid dogs; helping dogs fall asleep at night; and keeping their weight under control.
But simply opening your back door and letting the dog outside, doesn’t cut it. Your dog needs to walk two to three times a day, and that’s where you come in—benefitting your health as well. Start the walks slowly until you both build up your fitness levels. Walking around the block and into town and back are all great starts. This walking will also allow your dog to become more socialized and accepting of new situations and environments.
But sometimes it’s fun to break up your daily routine with new locations or longer walks. So we asked Kim Vandewater of Pet Rover, a mobile pet-grooming and complete pet concierge service in Maplewood, about her favorite places in the Maplewood and South Orange area to walk your dog, and she gave us some great recommendations:
6 Great Places To Walk Your Dog:
- South Mountain Reservation. This is Vandewater’s number-one, hands-down favorite. This 2,110-acre nature reserve is familiar to most local residents and offers extensive trails and a dog park.
- Memorial Park, Maplewood. This park with a field, playground, and picnic areas is on Valley Street between Oakland Road and Baker Street.
- Maplecrest Park, Maplewood. Open until sunset, this park at 237 Oakland Road has baseball fields, picnic areas, a playground, and skate park.
- DeHart Park, Maplewood. Open until 10 p.m., DeHart Park is located at 120 Burnett Avenue and offers a multipurpose field, playground, and street hockey rink.
- Maplewood streets. Vandewater says it’s beautiful to walk the numerous streets that run above Ridgewood and Wyoming Avenue toward the reservation. You get a good workout due to the hills, the houses are magnificent, and it is very peaceful.
Montrose and Tuxedo Park areas, South Orange. Walk your dogs while admiring the stately homes and having the occasional deer encounter in this section of South Orange. “I wish I could provide more places in South Orange, but all of the South Orange parks that I am aware of are not dog friendly.” Many residents are currently petitioning for a dog-friendly park in South Orange, and if this gets passed, we’ll be sure to add it to our list.