Walk Your Way To Better Health With Your Pet

For many years, I've been a believer that pets contribute greatly to the overall health and well being of humans.  Pets and the Human-Animal Bond benefit people in so many ways!

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PetsWalking your Dog can improve health.  Pet your dog to release healthy hormones. Pets, Dogs, Cats, walking
Walking my way to better health with my dogs, Icy and Phoebe during Pet Partners' World's Largest Pet Walk event.

A scientific statement by the American Heart Association assessed the influence of pet ownership (mainly dog or cat) on the presence and reduction of Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) risk factors.  

Among other things, the American Heart Assoc. statement included that:

> Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States.  Despite efforts promoting primary and secondary CVD prevention, obesity and physical inactivity remain at epidemic proportions.

> More than 60% of American adults are overweight or obese, and more than 50% don't perform recommended levels of physical activity.

> Pets, especially dogs, can provide increased physical activity.

Studies have shown that dog owners engage in more walking and other physical activity, and are more likely to achieve recommended levels of physical activity than non dog owners.  

Even better, people are lacing up their walking shoes for other pets too!  I've seen cats in walking harnesses walking towards better health with their people.  I've also seen dogs, cats and other pets riding in strollers, taking in the sights & sniffs as they help their people get more exercise by walking, running, and biking.

Health Benefits of Walking the dog,  Pets, Pet health, Dogs, Heart health, Walking
Walking provides health benefits for both pets and their people!

I participate in the Pet Partners World's Largest Pet Walk, an event that celebrates the health benefits of walking with pets.  It's a simple event to join.  People from around the world pledge to walk with their pets, starting at a synchronized date and time and ending whenever each participant feels comfortable.  It doesn't cost anything to join and you can walk anywhere you like.  Invite anyone with or without a pet to join you.  It's a simple way to raise awareness of the health benefits of walking with our pets. Easy-Peasy!  Visit the Pet Partners website to find out when the next walk is and mark your calendars for the next Worlds Largest Pet Walk (date TBA).

Walking is great for both human and pet health!  In people, it can improve cardiovascular fitness and reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.  Walking is also attributed to stronger bones and muscle strength. 

My parents lived in New York City for much of their lives.  Walking is a way of life in the city.  When they moved to the suburbs, they actively looked for opportunities to walk more.  They went for long walks in all the local parks, took evening strolls, and often opted to walk to stores instead of drive.  

Although my parents were 5 years apart in age, they both lived to be 94.  I'm sure their lifelong habit of walking, as well as their love of fresh fruit and salads, helped them get to 94.  I am so blessed to have had my parents in my life for so long.  I'm sure you want the same for your family!

Other benefits pets can provide to people are:

🐶 Pets can help lower your blood pressure.

🐾 Pets can help reduce stress and anxiety, which can actually help reduce pain!

🐶 Pets make us feel good, prompting the release of the "feel good" hormones Dopamine, Serotonin, and Endorphins.

🐾 It's been documented that pet owners have higher one-year survival rates following heart attacks.

🐾 Studies in Austria and Germany have linked healthcare savings to pet ownership reducing the number of  doctor visits needed.

Sources: Dr. Marty Becker, Pet Partners, and HABRI (Human Animal Bond Research Institute)

Our pets give us so much.  In addition to contributing to our health and well being, they give us the one thing only a pet can give - Unconditional Love!  Be thankful for the pets in your life. I know I am, my dogs are my greatest joy!

My UNCONDITIONAL LOVE of pets sweatshirt hoodie is perfect for walking your dog in style.  The design was created by Brooklyn artist MendyDraws, exclusively for Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them.  Can you tell Icy was the inspiration behind this design?

You can find this sweatshirt, and other products bearing our Unconditional Love design on my RedBubble online store

Unconditional Love of dogs sweatshirt,

Sweatshirts, t shirts, tote bags, leggings with Unconditional Love design

Hooded Sweatshirt, Phone Cases, Mugs, Tote Bags, Leggings, Lightweight Sweatshirt, and T-Shirts.

We'd love to hear how you stay active with your pet. Leave us a comment and share!


  1. Now that I work at home Ruby and I take more long walks together. Usually an hour long walk in the morning and another one in the afternoon. It's been so good for both us. Hoping we will keep it up in the winter. LOL.

  2. We have really been lax about walking the boys because it has been so hot. I am fearful ever since Bentley collapsed on us at the Grand Canyon. Anyway, cooler temps are here and we are dusting off our walking shoes.

  3. Even if I wanted to put my feet up and relax it doesn't happen to often - at least for not long anyway! My dog, and my cats keep me on my feet! My dogs make sure I stay active by going on regular daily walks and playing in the garden.

  4. I love walking and am lucky Layla does too, we do very long morning walks unless raining LOL and I sometimes feel we are walking all San Francisco but would not change it for anything . PS love the hoodie

  5. I agree, there are countless ways in which pets enhance our lives. I've only ever had old dogs but a few years ago we adopted a younger one because my husband wanted a friend that lasted more than a couple of years. I really need exercise but I'm too lazy so you would think having to walk Jack a few times a day is the answer. No cardio opportunities with him I'm afraid, he might miss sniffing or peeing on a blade of grass if he walked too quickly!!

  6. Love the idea of this walk. Kilo definitely gives me affection and exercise. He forces me up from my desk every few hours for an outing. My knees are feeling a bit better so I am hoping to walk more. Love your sweat shirt and popping over to check out your store. XS

  7. Love this post! Now that the weather has finally cooled down here I've been taking my dogs on lots of outdoor adventures. I try to take them on long walks/hikes at least 4 days a week, if not more. I'll have to try to remember to join the World's Largest Pet Walk next year. Funny aside, I once met someone in our neighborhood walking a ferret! My dogs were quite confused about why the other 'dog' was so strange haha.

  8. I could not agree more having a dog or a cat really helps with overall health and then walking and being active with our special BFFs makes it fun thanks for the reminder.

  9. There are many times I wish I had a dog, because it would definitely motivate me to walk. But don't tell that to Lola and Lexy! I love your merchandise, and now I'm motivated to go on Red Bubble!

  10. Walking with a cat is never going to be like walking with a dog (let's face it, cats walk you lol)but I like taking my leash friendly cats out on adventures. I think it's good for both of us.

  11. I so agree with everything you mentioned. Admittedly I've fallen off the wagon but can attest to the benefits of walking. It not only helps with improving your physical fitness but also helps people on existing BP medicine work even better. I'm happy to be fostering and have paws in the house again. I already know intuitively I'm MORE happy and content. So I'm sure fostering is helping my heart in more ways than one. Love the design too. Will share. I may have to get me a pair of those leggings.

  12. Excellent post, Cathy! I know I have always felt so much better after walking with my Huskies! They have a huge yard for exercise, and I can't walk as well (or as fast) as I used to be able to, but I sure do miss it. I always felt so invigorated, and as you know, a walk with a Husky can be very invigorating! ;-) I love your sweatshirt and just checked out your store - loving that coffee mug!

  13. I've seen someone walking their ferret down the street! Mr. N and I walk pretty much daily. He gets very upset when his walk is delayed.

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    1. I love that sweatshirt! I always knew that dogs were good for my health, but it is great to see some science to back that up.

  15. I wish I had worked with the girls when they were kittens to be able to walk with them. I know getting exercise with pets is a wonderful thing. I wish I could get out and walk right now however, I have a torn meniscus and cannot walk very far without a lot of pain or my knee given away. Hopefully once I get this fixed I can get back active again. Thank you for a wonderful post.

  16. I know that walking Luke pretty much daily has contributed a lot to keeping us both healthier. It's good for both of us! Walking is so simple, and so enjoyable!!
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets

  17. Bernie, Lizzie, and I go on walks pretty much every day. Plus Lizzie and I just started agility. I think she's going to be really good at it, like really good. I may need to re-evaluate some other choices in my life (like snacks) to get in better shape so I can run around the agility field with her because I think she's going to want to compete.

  18. Walking is so important.
    Not only for physical health but for the mind also.

  19. Thanks for the share. We love the sweatshirt. It looks very warm and comfortable for the winter season thats coming up soon. We love taking our little one for walks and we always feel great afterwards. Have a wonderful day. Great time reading this post.
    World of Animals

  20. These boots are also great if your dog already has injured their foot. best dog boots

  21. Cat stroller that are designed with cats in mind have durable mesh panels that offer your cat a view of the world while keeping them safely inside the stroller.

  22. This is so great. There’s a peace I find in walking dogs and a special bond created during walks. I’m a pet sitter, so I walk dogs daily and I just love it. I come home every day and walk my dog too.

  23. We try to walk or run our dogs daily. I love walking and hiking with them!

  24. I'm convinced our pets are angels with fur.Not only do they show us unconditional love but they keep us active and moving. What a blessing your parents lived to 94 years of age. Thanks for sharing this walking event. I'll have to check it out. And you look great in your lovely sweatshirt. Sharing!

  25. Layla gets at least 4 walks a day, some longer than others but I love those walks as its great to be out, moving and just enjoying the outside, I do not take a phone with me either. I think it is so important and having a dog does reduce stress plus keep you on your feet so they are keeping you healthy

  26. Such a great reminder to prioritize our health and well-being! Walking is such a healthy, fun exercise. And if you have a walking Buddy you get to have wonderful conversations (that includes the ones with our dogs too!)!

  27. Spending time with our dogs is the best! I love your sweatshirt design.

  28. This is a GREAT reminder! Our pets have such a positive impact on our lives. Going through the current pandemic and the various lockdowns, I know that I wouldn't have been NEARLY as active as I was without the dogs to motivate me to get up and get moving.