Does owning a dog make people more physically active?

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Khurram Nasir, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
The family dog can help you squeeze more exercise into your daily routine. Whether you and your dog are playing Frisbee or walking around the block, dog ownership offers extra opportunities to get fit. In one study featured by the American Heart Association, dog owners walked about 300 minutes weekly on average, compared to only 168 minutes reported by non-owners.

With the family dog as company during walks, you may feel extra motivation to exercise and more secure about your safety, and therefore, you might be more likely to leave the living room couch.

But owning a pet is not a magic pill for fitness. Pet ownership will not improve your health if you hold on to bad habits, such as smoking and overeating
Yes, studies show that dog owners are more active and healthier than non-dog owners. Playing with your dog and taking them for a walk on a regular basis is a good form of physical activity that will help you become more fit and improve your health and well-being
For sure! A study from the University of Missouri-Columbia found that people who walked 20 minutes a day, 5 days a week with their dog lost an average of 14 pounds in a year. There is a correlation between owning a dog and being more active because you feel obligated to take care of the health of your pet which also helps you to be healthier. 
Dawn Marcus
Neurology
A Canadian report showed that dog owners were considerably more physically active than non-owners. Dog owners walked nearly twice as much as non-owners. An obligation to care for their dogs was frequently cited as the motivation that allowed them to achieve this greater level of physical activity.
Fit As Fido: Follow Your Dog to Better Health

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Fit As Fido: Follow Your Dog to Better Health

Let your dog teach you to live a happier, healthier, and more fulfilling life! Companionship with your pet can be used as a means and a motivator to increase your own physical and mental fitness....

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.