Just like there are benefits for humans walking every day, there are a lot of health benefits of walking your dog. We already talked recently about how often you should walk your dog and how it’s important for your dog to get out during the day when you are out at work.
Now we want to talk about the real health benefits of walking your dog.
Top 10 Health Benefits Of Walking Your Dog
Keeps You Healthy
It’s recommended that we take 10,000 steps each day to keep us healthy, so what better way to do this than walking our dog. I know we don’t always get the best weather in Ireland but that’s the beauty of owning a dog, you have the perfect reason to go out in the rain and get some exercise.
Most dogs don’t mind what the weather is like, so whether it’s wet or dry they will be happy to accompany you and help you meet your 10,000 steps quota for the day.
Creates a Bond With Your Dog
There is no doubt that any time spent with your dog is great for developing that bond a dog has with their owner. The moment you pick up the dog lead, the moment the excitement begins.
As you take a walk with your dog their tail will be wagging as they happily walk alongside with you, spending time with you one on one.
Stops Destructive Behaviour
A bored dog is a destructive dog. If your dog is not getting enough exercise then they will become bored and destructive as they look for something to do to entertain themselves.
If you dog is getting lots of exercise, when you leave them for any period of time on their own they are more likely to take a nap and relax than be looking for something to do to entertain themselves – like chew your shoes or tear up the cushions!
Some dogs can get anxious when they are left at home. This can be due to separation anxiety or just because they have built up energy that they need to release.
A nice long dog walk will help them release that energy and hopefully, having spent additional time with you on a walk, they will feel less anxious when you leave them.
Socialises Your Dog
When you take your dog out for a walk they are naturally going to experience different sounds, sights, smells, people and dogs, which does make them more social.
You don’t necessarily need to introduce your dog to other dogs on your walk to socialise them. Just being out in different places and getting used to different noises can make them more social. They get used to the different sounds, which means they are less likely to be afraid or nervous of new surroundings.
Confidence And Trust Is Built
Some puppies and even older dogs can be quite nervous of anything they are not familiar with. Getting out every day with them can help with building their confidence and getting them used to being walked.
Rescues can often have trust issues about leaving the house and daily dog walks are a good way to build up that trust. They have time to bond with you, realise that they are going to come home after their walk and start to see that they can enjoy the outside world without fear. These walks can be huge in building their trust in you and other people in general.
Helps With Digestive Health
If you dog is not getting frequent walks they can often suffer from constipation. A long walk helps to keep your dog more ‘regular’, thus avoiding any issues with digestive health.
Helps With Toilet Training
If you dog is getting regular walks it helps with toilet training. They get used to when they are going out for their walk and begin to know when their bathroom break is.
This is especially important when you get a puppy, as they need to go to the bathroom more frequently. Leaving them too long without a walk, or break outside, often means that they will get used to going to the toilet on the floor inside the house. This is a habit that you then need to break over time.
Keeps Your Dog Fit And Healthy
Dogs need fresh air and exercise to keep them healthy. Being stuck in the house is not good for them, the same way that it’s not good for humans.
Everyone needs to stretch their legs and get out in the fresh air a few times a day.
Stops Weight Gain
If your dog is getting a little overweight then it’s probably time to up the number of walks that you take them on. Dogs need exercise to keep them from gaining weight, the same way that we do.
Along with a properly managed diet, you can keep a dog at their ideal weight through regular walks. If you are unsure how much you should be feeding your dog then consult your vet.
How Can Pet Sitters Ireland Help?
If you are struggling to maintain a regular walking schedule with your dog then take a read of our EBook that gives you different ways to exercise your dog. Click on the image below to access it.
If you need help to walk your dog then we would love to chat with you and see how we can help you.