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Dogs 'help older people to exercise'

Monday June 12th 2017

Older adults can improve their physical activity levels by owning a dog, a new study has highlighted.

Those over 65 are more likely to meet World Health Organisation exercise targets if they have a dog in their home, the research from the University of Lincoln and Glasgow Caledonian University suggests.

The study, which was produced in collaboration with the WALTHAM Centre for Pet Nutrition, made use of a specific type of activity monitor to gather data of dog owning and non-dog owning study participants.

Professor Daniel Mills, who led the project, said people tend to slow down a little bit as they age.

But he added: "By staying active, we can improve our health and other aspects of our quality of life. Factors driving higher levels of physical activity in adults are not well defined. We were interested in assessing whether dog ownership has the potential to improve the health of older adults through increased activity."

The research, published in BMC Public Health, found that d og owners typically walked 20 minutes more each day, with this exercise occurring at a moderate pace.

This article was written on behalf of helpucover. helpucover is a trading style of Pinnacle Insurance plc, an insurance company who offers Pet Insurance.

Copyright Press Association 2017