We’ve never had a dog. I’ve borrowed one for a walk before now and I’ve dog sat for weeks at a time. I like dogs, but I’ve tended to be put off keeping one by the idea of needing to commit to daily walking, even on bad weather days. It seems some dog owners don’t take that responsibility as seriously. To be fair, I can see how things could slide over time. In fact, it’s estimated 35 per cent of UK dogs do not get daily supervised exercise and that one-third of pets are overweight as a result of their owners’ sedentary lifestyles.
According to the Kennel Club, the government’s recommendation that people should get at least 30 minutes of exercise every day could be achieved on a daily dog walk , so people are being urged to match this during their excursions with their pet.
Walk Your Dog Week aims to encourage people to tackle these issues by heading outside more often with their dogs to improve their pet’s health and condition. The Walk Your Dog Week challenge, for owners to walk their dog every day during the week, including time off the lead when appropriate, has been developed with vets at the PDSA to stimulate a change amongst dog owners to help transform the health and wellbeing of their dogs.
Simon Hodgson, Forestry Commission England’s Chief Executive, says:
“We’re calling on dog owners up and down the country to take the Walk Your Dog Week challenge and help your dog get fit.
“A change of scene can be a great boost to motivation, so we’re recommending dog walkers head for one of our 1,500 woods and forests for locations that your dog and family can enjoy.
“They are the perfect place for dogs to get supervised exercise, including time off the lead, and explore the natural environment.”
It’s certainly true that the Forestry Commission has some great places to walk your dog as we know from our role as Forestry Commission bloggers. I’d really recommend getting out into the open air and giving Walk Your Dog week a go.