All dogs require exercise. Daily exercise not only helps them stay in shape but is also critical for their mental health. All dogs must receive daily exercise to keep them happy and healthy. Walking your dog stimulates the mind, provides physical activity, provides opportunities for socialization, and provides opportunities for behavioral training. Additionally, it gets both of you out and about while contributing to the development of your bond with your dog. There are numerous benefits to walking that extend beyond physical health, including the following:
Weight and Body Condition
Obesity is a severe health problem, but it has a reasonable solution, barring medical complications: burn more calories than consumed. Regular exercise, such as walking, is an excellent way to burn excess calories and maintain a healthy weight – for both you and your dog.
Another common health problem is immobility. Joints, even old ones, have to work. When people and pets are physically inactive for an extended period, their joints become stiff and keeping them mobile improves their function.
Digestive and Urinary Health
Walking regularly helps to regulate the digestive tract. Certain dogs, like some people, prefer to “go” on a schedule, and providing routine outdoor trips prevents constipation. Additionally, when urine remains in the bladder for extended periods, bladder infections are more likely to occur, so regular emptying maintains the health of this part of the anatomy as well. Of course, it is critical to consult with your physician and veterinarian before beginning an exercise program.
Dogs dislike getting bored, and if you provide them with something constructive to do, such as going for a walk, they may be less likely to engage in destructive behavior, such as chewing the couch. Walking exercises both the mind and body. Observing wildlife, exploring new paths, and seeing other people and their pets provide excellent mental stimulation for your dog that he cannot get in the same fenced area all the time. Additionally, walking expends excess energy and assists dogs in sleeping better at night.
Your dog’s universe revolves around you, and he lusts for your attention. What better way to bond with your dog than to go for a walk? Spending time alone with your dog strengthens your bond and aids in preventing annoying, attention-seeking behaviors such as whining or excessive barking.
Many people require external motivation to exercise and may rely on an exercise buddy to motivate them. What happens if your exercise partner cannot exercise due to work, traffic, or another commitment? Your dog is completely devoted to one person… you! As a result, he is the ideal exercise partner. Your dog is always willing to go for a walk with you.
Healthier People With Healthier Dogs
As you can see, regular walking benefits both you and your dog and helps prevent obesity, which is the main issue in both species. Nearly 75% of Americans are obese, and childhood obesity is increasing (close to 20 percent). Adults who frequently walked their dogs were less likely to be obese than their non-dog-owning neighbors in a 2008 study conducted in Seattle and Baltimore. Additionally, walking for 30 minutes a day helps prevent coronary heart disease, osteoporosis, colon and breast cancer, and type-2 diabetes.
Canine obesity is also a problem. Around 50% of dogs in the United States are overweight, and 25%-30% are obese. Obese dogs, on the other hand, do not live as long as lean dogs. Additionally, they experience an increased risk of heart disease and joint problems, which impair their quality of life. While it is true that dogs can exercise themselves when left alone in a fenced backyard, they, like us, prefer to lounge in the shade rather than a romp, especially when there is no one else to play with. However, if given the opportunity, they will gladly accompany their owners on a walk.
How Much Should We Walk?
The World Health Organization recommends that children aged 5-17 keep engaging in at least 60 minutes of mild to vigorous exercise per day. Adults having age 18 to 64 years should engage in 30 minutes of moderate exercise five days a week and at least twice weekly in strengthening exercises. Seniors over 65 should also engage in moderate exercise five days a week, strength exercises two or more days a week, and at least three days a week of flexibility and balance exercises.
Dog’s love nothing better than to go out for a walk, and the more almost always they can go, the better. Daily walks with your dog will ensure a wonderfully contented pet who will not be shy in expressing his affection for the owner who genuinely cares and understands his needs. Say the magic word, walkies, and he’ll be ready to depart before you are.