HIF Dog ’n’ Health Games


Matt Fuller

With the HIF Dog ‘n’ Health Games just around the corner, I hope that by now some of our Perth readers will have registered for this exciting new event.

In the meantime, I thought I'd explore the impact of owning a pet and how it can improve your body, mind and soul. After all, a survey conducted by HIF last year showed that their members who own a pet felt an overwhelming sense of love and responsibility for their furry, hairy and feathered friends. But how can our pets can have a positive impact on our health and lifestyle in return?

A healthy lifestyle goes hand in hand with pet ownership. Around my great state of WA there are numerous parks, bush treks and dog beaches that we can use to get ourselves motivated while enjoying the open space walking or jogging with our dogs.

A physical benefit of being a dog lover is movement. Most dogs need some sort of regular walk or exercise, and as owners we are responsible to get up, get out and either walk or jog with our dogs, burning more calories in the meantime over different terrain.

The more difficult the landscape, the harder we work; beach, hills and bush treks all have different undulating surfaces therefore we are incorporating different muscle groups such as calves, quads, hamstrings and glutes. Not forgetting the positive impact this has on our cardiovascular system, ultimately leading us towards a healthier lifestyle.

Pet ownership not only rewards us physically but also mentally. The mental side of the pet/owner relationship is massive not only for adults but also children. The bond between person and animal in a family or individual environment is, to a certain degree, like having another small child of the furry kind around.

As pet owners we tend to have (or develop) qualities that come with the responsibility of being a pet lover. For example: companionship, love, trust, loyalty, a caring nature, happiness, emotional well-being, leadership and responsibility.

I definitely believe that pet ownership leads to an improved and healthier lifestyle giving us greater physical and mental-emotional well-being, combined with the confidence and strength we gain from the incidental exercises attributed to pet ownership.

I hope to see you at the HIF Dog ‘n’ Health games on Sunday 17th July for a morning of healthy fun for the whole family that includes circuits for adults, kids and our four legged friends and is of course helping to raise much needed funds and awareness for the Dogs’ Refuge Home.

Here's a taste of what you can expect at the HIF Dog 'n' Health Games! The 'Dog and You' workout will be taken by the awesome Chelsea from DogON Fitness and the Canine Adventure Course will be run by Morley Vet. Remember, you don't need to be fit to take part in this event, it's all about having fun!

Your health and fitness is a lifestyle choice. Until next time, 

Exclusive health insurance offer for Matt's readers - get a bonus $50 eftpos card.

Simply join online or over the phone by calling 1300 13 40 60 and mention this promo code: MATT50

Important: This article is general advice only. For further advice or information on this topic, please consult your health professional.

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