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Mental health benefits of walking your dog

It's very rare to come back from a dog walk, even a cold and rainy one, and not feel better than you did before.
Mental health benefits of walking your dog

We know that dogs love walking. They thrive on it as it addresses so many of the things in life that are most important to them - read more here. And it's well documented, too, that us humans get enormous benefits from walking. From time away from a busy family or job, to being in nature, to exercise and making friends - there are few things in life guaranteed to make us feel better than getting out for a walk.

Meditation and mindfulness expert, Andy Puddicombe, well-known as the voice of mindfulness app, Headspace, said to us: “Going for a brisk walk is one of the best things we can do for our mental health. It not only helps improve our physical fitness, but in being more present in the body, it also helps us to step out of all the inner chatter in the mind. So, it's perhaps no surprise that we might feel less tense, less stressed, and more optimistic after a good walk”

Dr Carri Westgarth, Lecturer in Human-Animal Interaction at University of Liverpool, says, Research shows that walking with your dog not only has a huge impact on your physical activity levels, it makes you feel better too! It’s also been shown that watching your dog having a good time is a huge stress reliever; while walking also helps us connect with nature and with other people out walking – other factors well-known to bolster positive mental wellbeing.”

So, by taking part, you’ll not only be directly helping dogs without a home – but you'll also be doing wonders for your mental health – all while you spend time with your four-legged friend! What could be better!

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