Embracing National 'Walk Your Dog' Month. How man’s best friend can support our health and wellbeing…

If you’re the proud owner of a canine companion, you’ll be pleased to hear that these furry friends are good for our physical health as well as our emotional wellbeing.

January is national ‘Walk your Dog’ month. An activity which can sometimes feel like a chore is often overlooked with regards to its positive impact on our health.

We know by now that physical activity stands as a cornerstone of wellness, and walking in any form aligns perfectly with this in mind. It's a low-impact, free exercise that doesn't require any specialist equipment. Instead, it allows us to step outside, breathe in fresh air, and engage in movement that can significantly impact our health.

It can be hard to head outdoors at this time of year, but what better motivation than soulful puppy eyes that light up in anticipation of ‘walkies’!?

Let’s look at all the ways that walks with your best furry friend can benefit us on a physical, mental and emotional level;


Supporting physical health

For dog owners, daily walks with their pets present an opportunity to fulfil our dog’s physical needs while simultaneously reaping numerous health benefits ourselves. Research consistently highlights the positive effects of walking on cardiovascular health, and weight management. The regularity of this exercise not only helps in maintaining a healthy weight but also lowers the risk of heart disease, and strengthens bones and muscles.

Feelings of connection

However, 'Walk Your Dog' Month goes far beyond supporting just our physical health. It celebrates the inherent emotional bond between dogs and their owners. The companionship experienced during these walks contributes to reduced stress levels and feelings of loneliness. This shared activity promotes social interaction, whether through casual conversations with other dog owners or as an icebreaker for new connections in the community. This is even more important for those of us who feel isolated.


Exposure to cold

The timing of ‘Walk Your Dog Month’ offers another layer of added benefits. January is one of our chilliest months, and exposure to cold has several known benefits. Not only do we burn more calories when exposed to low temperatures, but it boosts our immunity just when we need it most. At this time of year, sunlight levels are also low so getting out and about in the middle of the day allows us to maximise what little there is, helping with vitamin D which can dip in winter.



Walking with a dog offers tranquillity amidst a busy day. Without the constant distraction of conversation, it becomes a form of meditation and mindfulness, allowing us to disconnect from screens, stress, and worries, and instead, connect with nature and our canine companions.



A good routine is key to many aspects of our health and so there’s more good news in this regard; 'Walk Your Dog' Month fosters adherence to a schedule, a fundamental aspect of leading a balanced lifestyle. Regular walks encourage consistency in daily activities and promote better sleep patterns. This structure contributes to stress reduction and a sense of stability, further enhancing overall well-being.


I encourage everyone to embrace 'Walk Your Dog' Month as an opportunity to prioritise health on multiple levels. Let’s not also forget how crucial exercise is for your pooch, on a physical and psychological level. They love being out and about with us, and their happiness is such a mood booster to us as loving ‘fur parents’!



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