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Do dogs help children to stay fit?

We know that children need exercise to keep fit and healthy and so do our four legged friends.

March 25 2021 - 3 min read

Do dogs help children to stay fit?

We know that children need exercise to keep fit and healthy and so do our four legged friends.

Given half a chance most children would pick playing on computer games or watching TV over exercise, but we all that technology promotes inactivity. 

Owning a dog can make all the difference and can help encourage children to get out of the house come rain or shine.

It’s been estimated that children who live with a dog exercise on average 11 minutes more a day than those that don’t. That might not sound much but that adds up to a whopping 5 hours extra exercise a month.

However it could be even more... The University of Victoria found that dog owners walked on average 300 mins a week compared to 168 mins for none dog owners - that's the equivalent of burning an addition 500 calories burned a week.

It's not just the additional minutes that add up either, dog owner's walk on average 28% faster than those who don't.  Showing that it can be a great way for children to learn to walk at speed.

It's not just children that benefit, studies have shown that teenagers are more physically active then teens whose family don't own a dog.

If you have a dog or other pets, here are a few things to consider if you are thinking about fostering.

Would you like to know more about fostering with Fostering People?

Find your local team.

Find out more in our series about the benefits of pets below.