Pets owners and exercise; Who’s really walking who?

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — Who’s walking who? Purdue researchers are studying potential health benefits for people walking their dog.

Researchers said one study suggests that people are more motivated to walk their dog if it benefits their pet. The study found that the group of dog owners who received emails promoting ways for dog and owner to be healthy, walked their dog about 80 minutes a week.

However, pet owners in the group that didn’t receive the email tips walked their dog only 17 minutes a week.

Purdue assistant professor Libby Richards said she believes dogs help people find the motivation to exercise.

“For the most part, a dog is not going to tell you they don’t want to go for a walk. They’ll always have time for you. They’ll be excited and energetic about going for a walk, which can make the walk a fun activity,” Richards said.

A second study, similar to this one will begin soon. Richards said she is looking for people with dogs to conduct the study. If you are interesting in being involved, contact Libby Richards at 765-496-9463 or visit Purdue’s School of Nursing. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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