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My Bichon's just started having her first season and I want to take her for a walk. Is this a good idea? I know she will emit a scent that male dogs will obviously recognize as her being ready to mate, but don't know whether I can simply pick her up when we see another dog.

Obviously, I don't want her to have puppies yet (or ever really), but I don't want her growing restless with a lack of exercise.

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It would be a good idea to avoid popular dog walking routes and you'll perhaps need to scare off interested males. No need to pick her up when she gets approached, just stepping in between her and the other dog should be enough. Chances are she won't approve of the other dogs and refuse their mounting attempts.

If you meet another dogwalker during your walk then communicate that she is in heat up front so they can then call their own dog off should they get too friendly.

If you never want puppies then consider getting her spayed sooner rather than later.

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