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Aug. 26 has been dubbed National Dog Day, but whatever you call it, it’s a great time to thank our canine companions for their unconditional love by taking them for a long, leisurely walk. Follow these tips to make your hike a delight for your dog:

1. Put away your cellphone, switch off your iPod, and pay attention to what your dog is doing, so you don’t yank him along while he’s relieving himself.

2. Give your dog plenty of time to sniff the fire hydrants and bushes; this is how dogs get their “news.”

3. If your dog is friendly, let her socialize with other friendly dogs you meet along the way.

4. Always use a harness (never a choke or prong collar) to avoid injuring your dog’s neck and to ease the strain on your arm.

5. Take care in hot weather; dogs can’t cool themselves as efficiently as humans can, and they are wearing fur coats. Make sure the pavement is cool and never jog with dogs on hot days.

For more ways to celebrate your canine companion, check out Let’s Have a Dog Party! by Ingrid E. Newkirk, available at www.PETACatalog.com.

Sincerely,

LINDSAY POLLARD-POST

The PETA Foundation

501 Front St.

Norfolk, VA 23510

757-622-7382, ext. 8107

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