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|Wed, 5 Jun 2013|
Dog Ownership May Keep Humans Healthy, Suggests Glencadia Dog Camp Owner
Wed, Jun 5th, 2013 | Posted In: Animals / Health | Written by: Kati Henry +
If thereís one thing the owners at Glencadia Dog Camp know, itís that some time strolling through nature is good for the body and the soul. A 15-acre dog retreat in the New York countryside, Glencadia Dog Camp is a place where dogs and their owners can run and play. The special bond between canines and humans has always been a revered and respected mystery in the west, and scientists may have discovered that some regular romping out of doors together is at least part of the reason why.
In a meta analysis conducted by a team at Baylor College of Medicine, research experts found that there was a significant correlation between dog ownership and improved heart health. Their guess as to the root of the relationship was the increased amount of exercise that usually resulted from pet ownership. Having to take a dog out several times a day, or even playing outside with the animal, led to a higher level of calorie-burning movement such as walking, throwing, bending, and running, etc. Although the scientists werenít able to prove their theory, it is generally accepted as a sound one in the medical community.
Historically, studies have shown that having a pet leads to lower blood pressure, diminished negative responses to stress, and improved odds of survival after a heart attack. Pets like those at Glencadia Dog Camp have also been used for therapy in recent years, serving as sources of comfort and stress release in nursing homes and treatment centers alike. Beyond their physical benefits, pets are also known to bring happiness and a sense of calm to owners by nature of their attention, affection, loyalty and of course the ďcuteĒ factor.
As the instance of heart disease and obesity has risen in the U.S., researchers and scientists alike have been searching for ways to manage the syndromes more effectively. Although pharmaceutical drugs and surgeries are available to address these conditions, they are rarely successful in altering the root of the disorder or changing a patientís behaviors significantly enough to prevent relapse. In the case of a heart attack, relapse can prove deadly, so the stakes are quite high.
The finding that pets can help reduce the risk of heart disease is a hopeful one. This is because, unlike beta-blockers and other blood pressure and cholesterol medications, they arenít known to have harmful side effects (perhaps besides the stress of initial housebreaking). Pets also serve as a motivation for change, says the owner at Glencadia Dog Camp. Often, people are willing to take pets outside or to the park on days they would normally sit inside. Because dogs use the bathroom outdoors, it takes the option staying indoors and sedentary off the plate. Valuing the petís needs over personal comfort can help spur a pet owner into exercising when he or she otherwise wouldnít.
There are a number of ways to exercise with your pet. The experts at Glencadia Dog Camp weigh in on their favorite methods and give some practical, heart healthy advice for caring for your pets.
Glencadia Dog Campís Best Ways to Play With Your Pet
At Glencadia Dog Camp, space is no object. Acres of rolling hills and fields allow dogs to roam with safety and comfort, exercising their bodies as well as their brains as they search for food, plants, and other objects of interest. Although not everyone can bring their dogs to such a location regularly, there are some great ways to exercise with pets that nearly everyone can do close to home.
1) Taking Walks
Taking walks with a dog is a safe and wonderful way to keep the dog within reach while allowing him to exercise. Itís also a way to bond with your pup and get some fresh air at the same time.
2) Playing Fetch
Fetch can be a difficult game to play in the city or where there arenít safe public places available. Thankfully, fetch can be accomplished inside if you have a big enough space. A hallway or living room can serve as a viable sprinting place for smaller pups, and bigger dogs can be kept amused with laser pointers that keep them moving without large balls or space required.
In the event that thereís a school or park nearby that allows off-leash dogs, says the owner of Glencadia Dog Camp, these spaces can be a wonderful venue for exercise. Itís also a good idea to ask close neighbors or friends with yards for permission to borrow their lawns once a week or so in exchange for a nice baked item or other service. Be sure to always pick up after your dog, especially if youíre borrowing someoneís space.
This game is a fun and strength-building activity for both puppies and humans, but owners should make sure this is a good activity for their dogs before beginning. While some dogs are docile by nature and enjoy a good tug-of-war every once in a while, more aggressive dogs may be ďtriggeredĒ by pull-and-push play. In this case, a dog may start to think this type of behavior is acceptable in other situations, as well. If your dog has a tendency to go after other animals or even people, tug-of-war is not a good option. If not, tug away!
4 ) Jumping Tricks
Most pups will jump for a treat or toy. Jumping is a great way to tire dogs out in a small space and can be done quite effectively in just a few minutes, says Glencadia Dog Camp owner and expert. Be sure the surface your pup is jumping on isnít too hard for his paws or joints. Carpet or soft wood is a good option in these cases. A good rule of thumb is that if you wouldnít want to jump up and down on a certain floor without shoes, donít make your dog do it.
If a dog park is near, letting your canine run off-leash is a wonderful option as long as he or she is friendly, and comfortable with other dogs. Although all dogs enjoy taking a walk, thereís nothing quite like deciding where to run on your own.
Glencadia Dog Camp is a 15-acre space that allows dogs the freedom to explore and adventure in the wild. When city dogís families go on vacation, this is where pups go to have a retreat of their own.