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A dog to force yourself to walk daily:good or bad idea?

A dog to force yourself to walk daily:good or bad idea?

Adopting a dog is not a decision taken lightly. Their life expectancy is between 10 and 18 years depending on the breed and size. But having a dog is extremely beneficial at any age. The canine gives children more responsibilities, it brings good humor to families, it protects the house and makes us move. Adopting a dog to force yourself to walk:is it a good idea? Let's try to answer this question.

The dangers of a sedentary lifestyle

A sedentary lifestyle is a real scourge. According to ANSES, 95% of the adult French population suffers from a lack of physical activity! You read the number correctly. In our country, only 5% of the adult population practice sufficient physical activity. To be healthy, you have to move! We should do:

  • 10,000 steps per day (4400 steps after age 65),
  • 30 minutes of cardiorespiratory activity (cycling, swimming, brisk walking, running, etc.), 5 times a week,
  • 2 muscle strengthening sessions per week,
  • 2 relaxation sessions per week.

A sedentary lifestyle is proven when a person spends more than 8 hours sitting in a day. It has catastrophic consequences on health and considerably increases the risk of chronic diseases. In addition to generating lower back pain and loss of muscle mass, a sedentary lifestyle increases the risk of:

  • Overweight (BMI greater than 25) and obesity (BMI greater than 30),
  • High blood pressure,
  • Cardiovascular diseases,
  • Diabetes,
  • Blood circulation disorders,
  • Ulcer,
  • Digestive disorders,
  • Cancer.

Fight sedentary lifestyle

It is essential to fight sedentary lifestyle from an early age but also after 60 years. All generations have been affected by the health crisis linked to the coronavirus epidemic. We spent a lot of time locked up at home and in front of screens during confinement. But things have changed. Now is the time to take control.

To be in good health and to age well, you must have regular physical activity adapted to your condition. In this way, you strengthen your body, reduce the risk of injury and maintain good mobility. In general, sport repels the effects of aging. If you are sick, it helps to heal faster. It is for this reason that since 2016, doctors can prescribe sport on prescription.

Adopting a dog:the solution for walking every day

Many seniors choose to adopt a dog. It is an excellent idea ! In addition to reducing loneliness, the dog allows you to be more active. On average, the physical activity of a senior who has a dog is 20% higher . It must be said that having a dog means committing to taking it out every day and even several times a day.

As a reminder, an adult dog needs to go out 3 to 4 times a day. Ideally, each of these outings should last at least 20 minutes. This rule applies especially if you do not have an outdoor space. Puppies should be taken out more regularly until they are potty trained. It should be noted that depending on the breed of dog chosen, it will be necessary to plan more walks. These are not seasonal! You have to take your pet out several times a day, but especially in all seasons.

If you choose to have a dog, you can walk it daily in your neighborhood but also move away a little to discover another place to walk. Dare to go out in the countryside, in the forest or by the sea! You will both be good.

A dog to maintain social ties

Having a dog is good for your health because thanks to him, you will have daily physical activity, namely walking. But that's not all ! Having a dog often helps maintain social ties. When you walk him, you chat with other walkers. It is possible to take group walks and even practice a canine activity. Some are accessible to seniors. More often than not, having a dog can reduce social isolation and promote interaction within a neighborhood.

A dog to maintain his cognitive faculties

Thanks to your dog, you will stimulate your cognitive faculties. Indeed, you will have to educate your companion but also take him to his appointments with the veterinarian. You have to think about feeding it every day, taking it out and playing with it. These habits are incredibly beneficial from a neurological perspective. The benefits are increased tenfold when the social bond is improved. Finally, know that the dog is a very empathetic animal, he will know how to share your joys as well as your sorrows!

Adopting a dog:a commitment to consider

As we have specified, a dog has a life expectancy of between 10 and 18 years. It therefore represents a long-term commitment, a parameter to be taken into consideration for seniors. It is necessary to take into account his state of health before embarking on the adventure. If today you have the opportunity to take your dog out and take care of yourself, what will it be tomorrow? This setting does not prevent you from having a dog. However, instead of adopting a puppy, it may be a good idea to adopt an adult dog. In addition, you will be doing a good deed because each year more than 100,000 pets are abandoned.

Which breed of dog to choose?

Adopting a dog is a big decision. But it is not the only one ! You must also choose a breed of dog. How to do ? You simply need to identify your needs and abilities. Next, you will determine the height and weight of the dog. The size is important because a large dog can be more difficult to manage but they are more reassuring. Seniors tend to favor medium-sized dogs and small dogs. It is easier to take them everywhere.

The personality of the dog is also to be taken into consideration. Calm dogs are more popular than overly energetic ones. Similarly, it is not recommended to turn to a breed of dog that needs a lot of physical activity on a daily basis.

It is important to choose a dog that you can take care of. Thus, his well-being will be ensured. Canines that do not get enough exercise can be more difficult to live with on a daily basis.