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This article will be no surprise to  dog owners-in a study published by the journal BMC Public Health,  “dog owners on average walked 22 minutes more per day compared to people who didn’t own a dog”.  That extra 22 minutes a day puts you into the Surgeon General of the United States recommendation of 150 minutes of walking a week for fitness and to alleviate a host of diseases and depression. A similar study published by the CDC found that dog owners also walked more.

Researchers found that not only was there an “increase in exercise, but also the exercise was at a moderate pace”.  Walking was at 3 miles an hour  or 4.8 kilometers per hour, a kilometer faster than the average.

Prior studies have shown that moderate-intensity walking is just as effective as running in lowering the risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, Type 2 diabetes and other conditions. And the more people walk, the more the health benefits increase, according to the American Heart Association.”

The study used fitness devices that measured speed, distance. Researchers were surprised at the additional activity of dog owners.”As dog owners know, when your hound leaps up onto your bed in the morning, you have little choice but to get up and go”. Researchers note that pet ownership is also linked to longevity and lower rates of depression and stress, suggesting one more reason  to add a dog to your household.

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