There’s no denying that walking has both physical and mental health benefits – increasing cardiovascular fitness, helping with blood pressure, cholesterol and alleviating stress and anxiety. These benefits extend to our four-legged friends too, with walking helping dogs with their fitness, socialisation, decreasing loneliness and building a stronger connection with humans.
Dog walking groups
Exercise can often feel like a chore, but having a dog to walk is an excellent motivator to get you up and moving. If you haven’t got a pooch of your own, then joining a local dog walking group is a great option.
Not only will it provide you with a boost to get active, there are a number of other significant mental benefits:
- Stress – Spending time with any animal, particularly a dog, has been found to reduce your cortisol levels – the stress hormone. This, teamed with the well-known unwinding benefits of exercise and you’re tackling your stress two-fold.
- Reducing depression and anxiety – loneliness can be experienced by both humans and dogs and can lead to feelings of depression and anxiety. Getting out and about for a walk is a great way to remedy this. Dogs are great companions to take walking if you’re not keen on going solo. Plus, you’re also helping your dog to be more social (which it will love) and providing an opportunity for you both to meet new people.
- Connecting with community and nature – Going for a walk through your local neighbourhood is a great opportunity to connect with your community and speak to others who may have dogs too. Plus, studies show that immersing yourself in nature can keep you more focussed.
- Satisfaction – You don’t need to be able to communicate with a dog to know just how much they love going for a walk. Enabling them to get out, smell new scents and meet other dogs will give you an enormous sense of satisfaction at how happy you have made your furry friend. Plus, you can be satisfied knowing that you’ve got some exercise in the process.
A walking group near you – Panda’s Paws walks
We offer regular small walking groups with the Panda’s Paws team. On the walking group you will be joined by our beautiful greyhounds – Ghost, Darcy and Pepper – to explore the beautiful sites of the Mid North Coast. Following the walk, the group has a coffee and a chat at a nearby cafe.
To find out more about the walking groups and how you can join in, contact us!