Prescribe Dog Walking for Health

Reference:Christian HE et al Dog ownership and physical activity: a review of the evidence. J Phys Act Health. 2013 Jul;10(5):750-9.

This study compared the physical activity levels of dog owners to non-dog owners (with studies primarily from Australia and the United States).

Not surprisingly, the meta-analysis found that dog owners engaged in more walking and physical activity than non-dog owners.

They found the average dog owner walked their dog 4 times a week for an average period of 40 minutes. This fits the minimum of 150 min/week of walking suggested for health.

Clinical Relevance: Ask your inactive patients, “Do you have a dog?”

Perhaps if they were thinking of getting a dog (usually from pressure from kids), the advice from a PT may finally convince them to get a dog. Hopefully, it’s a dog that needs plenty of walking.

Posted on: October 11, 2015

Categories: Relevant Physical Therapy Articles

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