"Wir mussten mit dem Hund spazieren gehen" is the best way in German to say the English "we had to walk the dog." I gave the literal translation to show dgough how to understand that "spazieren gehen (to go strolling/take a walk)" could be the same word for walking the dog.
Is it only me, or is not the same meaning. DL states "Wir mussten mit dem Hund spazieren gehen." means "We had to walk the dog". The way I understand the German phrase is:"We had to take a walk and incidentally took the dog with us" and not that "We must take out the dog".... Can a native speaker clarify this for me, please...
Without the dog, "spazieren gehen" und "müssen" would not combine. "Spazieren gehen" usually means you are walking for pleasure, the only good reason that can change this pleasure into an obligation is the dog.
Your version would sound more like: "Wir wollten einen Spaziergang machen, und haben dann auch den Hund gleich mitgenommen."
The opposite: "Wir mussten mit dem Hund raus, und da haben wir gleich einen richtigen Spaziergang gemacht.
I am German and I have a dog. And I can tell you for sure:
When the dog needs to go outside, I have to use "Ich führe den Hund aus". (or coll. German: "Ich führe den Hund Gassi" - Gassi stands for 'Gasse', small or narrow street)
to walk the dog = den Hund ausführen
When I want to go for a walk and somebody urges me to take his dog along, then I can say Ich musste mit dem Hund spazieren gehen.
Sorry to say, but the DL translation is NOT correct.
Some prepositions require dative, including "mit". http://german.about.com/od/grammar/ht/Dative-Prepositions.htm
Some prepositions can use either dative or accusative: http://german.about.com/od/grammar/a/DualPrepositions.htm
There are even verbs that require dative: http://german.about.com/od/onlinecourses/fl/German-Dative-Verbs.htm
"Had to walk the dog" and " Had to go for a walk with the dog" (both accepted correct) to me have slightly different meanings. The first is an obligation to take the dog out for exercise or allow it to perform its natural functions. The second is being obliged to go for a walk accompanied by the dog, for some reason, not necessarily the first. Very subtle but there. How is that differentiated in German?
I try reading all of these comments; but I can't literally read ALL of them, so I hope this isn't redundant. I assume the "gehen" is essential to the meaning of this sentence but I'm not sure of the reasoning as to why. I thought you could just use the verb spazieren and it alone would mean went for a stroll. In other words, I'm not sure I understand why you couldn't have just said "Wir mussten mit dem Hund spazieren." unless the gehen makes it more of a command? Hoping someone can clear that up for me. Danke in advance.
No, you must use "gehen" it is part of the idiom. "gehen spazieren" is used for "to go for a walk", perhaps as it is different from "spazieren fahren""which is "to go for a drive." "Wir waren spazieren." is "We went for a walk." http://dictionary.reverso.net/german-english/spazieren