If you have a dog, it’s likely you’ll spend your fair share of time walking – potentially more than two weeks every year according to new research from TUX.
The average Kiwi dog owner currently heads out at least once a day with their best mate (81%), but more than half (57%) don’t love their current walks.
With years of experience fueling active Kiwi dogs, the team at TUX took on the challenge of finding out exactly what makes the perfect Kiwi dog walk to help connect Kiwis and their canine companions.
The results are in, and the team can reveal that the ideal Kiwi dog walk takes place at either the park (56%) or beach (48%), is approximately 3km long and takes about an hour.
The most important element though? For dog owners the focus is on location, but the priority for their dogs is what happens when they get there - a walk must take place somewhere where they can run off-leash (88%), have fun and burn through some of the fuel in their tank.
Many dog owners feel their current walks don’t deliver what their dog wants. For example, half of walkers (48%) want their dog to be able to socialise with other dogs on their walks, yet just one in three do (33%). At the same time, more than a third (37%) think a swim is an essential component, but just 15% of the nation’s dogs have the chance on their regular walk.
Jennifer Chappell, Country Business Manager at TUX said; “We Kiwis like to think of dogs as our best mates. This research revealed just how much they enjoy being outside, having fun and being active, which is really encouraging to see.
“With more than a third of dog walkers saying that a desire to spend quality time with their dog was a prompt for walking, we thought we’d have some fun and come up with the recipe to make that quality time the perfect Kiwi dog walk for all involved.”
Perhaps surprisingly, dog walkers are slightly more inclined to pick a weekday walk (56%) over a weekend (44%), and the early birds (50% morning) pip the night owls to the post (44% afternoon or evening).
While most want a nice gentle stroll, 14% of Kiwis are up for something a little tougher, picking an eight out of ten or higher on the scale of a challenging walk. Additionally, there are a small number of fitness fanatics out there (8%) who would prefer to run with their dog rather than walk.
So, where is the best place to find the ideal walk? There are plenty of great options to choose from, and Aucklanders might want to check out the Kakamatua Inlet, a dog-friendly beach which, at low tide, is a great place for dogs to get a real chance to let loose. Gisbornites have the beautiful Wainui Beach and those from Otago can try Smails Beach which provides a multitude of places to explore, on and off leash.
“The nation’s dog walkers currently rate their walks a 7.9 out of 10. While it’s not bad, we won’t be happy until all of the nation’s canines are getting a solid 10 out of 10 walk! Ahead of a summer of exploring our own back yard, hopefully we’ve helped inspire a few dog owners to get out there and explore more of the beautiful dog walks New Zealand has to offer,” finished Jennifer Chappell.
To check out the list of TUX’s Ideal Kiwi Dog Walks visit: www.tux.co.nz/nz-ideal-walks.