Dog Walking — The Health Benefits

So you have a dog.  You aren’t alone.There are more than 72 million pet dogs in the United States according to the Animal Veterinary Medical Association, now that’s a lot of dogs…

What are Some of the Benefits of Pet Ownership?

Various studies from around the world suggest that pets offer many benefits to their owners, including:

  • People who walk their dogs are seen by other people as friend and approachable;
  • A study of patients waiting in dentist surgeries found that watching fish swim around in an aquarium is as effective at reducting stress as hypnosis;
  • Stroking a patting a pet can reduce the physiological indicators of stress, including high blood pressure; and
  • The non-judgemental companionship and unconditional love offered by pets is know to have considerable mental health benefits for owners, including increased self-esteem

The Community Benefits of Pets

Research undertaken by the University of Western Australia has found that owning a pet can also benefit the whole community.  The researchers found that pet owners, in particular dog owners, were more likely to:

  • Acknowledge and greet other people in the street;
  • Exchange favors with neighbors; and
  • Meet others in their neighborhood 

Dog Walking — the Risks

Like all exercise, dog walking can carry some risks, especially for older people. Injuries can include falls in the home and outside, and dog bites.  Children under the aged of four are at the highest risk of dog bites and should be supervised around dogs at all times.

Dog Walking Preparation

Prepare for walking your dog like you would prepare for any exercise, with stretches; in particular, stretches for both front and back legs and stretches of the back and arms.  Make sure your equipment (including a dog leash and walking shoes) is suitable and will not cause injury. The dog collar should fit snuggly around the dogs neck to prevent it from slipping off.  You and your dog should be protected from execessive heat and sunburn, and have plenty of water for hydration, so make sure you bring water with you on your walk.

Choose your Dog Carefully

If you’re not very active, owning a dog could give you a very good reason to walk regularly.  But before you rush out and buy a dog, plan your purchase. Not all dogs are right for all people.  Make sure you choose a breed that’s appropriate to your lifestyle.  For example, don’t buy a large active dog if you live in a small apartment or have limited mobility.

Dog Walking Tips

When you walking your dog:

  • Aim for 30 minute walks, five times per week;
  • Keep your dog on leash all times in public areas, unless it’s an ‘off leash’ zone or at a dog park;
  • Supervise your dog around your children;
  • Take a plastic bag or scoop to clean up your dog’s waste;
  • Make sure your dog is properly identified;
  • Make sure your dog is altered;
  • Avoid walking in extreme heat; and
  • Take fresh water for you and your dog to drink

Don’t have time to walk your dog? We can help!  Visit our web site to learn more about sit-stay-play In-home pet sitting & more.LLC  We schedule dog walks in half-hour increments.  We come to your home and take your dog around your neighborhood for his/her walk, or for an additional fee, visits to dog parks and pet-friendly stores can be arranged.

Our dog walkers are insured, professional, compassionate and dependable.  We’ll take good care of your dog and look forward to meeting you and your pal.  Contact us to schedule your dog walk service or call us at 765-286-0764.  We provide care to Muncie and surrounding communities.

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