The Good Life, Zoomer Report

Dogs and Exercise

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We all know that having pets boosts our wellbeing. Now there’s evidence it also makes us more fit.

Several studies show that dog owners more likely to take regular walks, and are more active over all than people who don’t have dogs.

One study even found that older people are more likely to take regular walks if the walking companion is canine rather than human. And to the surprise of the researchers, those walking dogs showed a much greater improvement in fitness, increasing their speed by 28 percent, compared with just 4 percent for those walking with people.

Another piece of research from Michigan state university tracked 5,900 people in Michigan, including more than 2000 with dogs. It found nearly half of dog walkers exercised an average of 30 minutes a day at least five days a week. By comparison, only about a third of those without dogs got that much regular exercise.The dog walkers were more likely to take part in other physical activities like sports and gardening. On average, they exercised about 30 minutes a week more than people who didn’t have dogs.

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