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National Walk Your Dog Week was founded in 2010 by Celebrity Pet Lifestyle Expert and Animal Advocate Colleen Paige, to bring awareness to the ever-increasing problem of canine behavior issues and canine obesity in America. Walk Your Dog Week aims to improve the health and well being of America's dogs and sends the message to unchain your dogs!"With more and more people becoming sedentary and gaining weight due to a lack of exercise, say's Colleen Paige, founder of the day. Too many dogs don't get the necessary outlet they need to stay physically and mentally healthy. I feel that part of the overpopulation of dogs in this country is hugely associated with our growing waistlines. Generally, the less a person exercises, the less their dog exercises. Having trained thousands of dogs, it's my estimation that at least 75% or more of dogs in shelters are there, due to a lack of exercise, which has resulted in serious behavior issues such as aggression, destruction and separation anxiety.

Often, dogs run away from home because they're left alone and bored or kept sequestered all day long in a crate or a small yard, which only exacerbates a dog's destructive, aggressive or anxious tendencies. This, coupled with a lack of exercise and too much fatty food, leads to obesity, as well as medical issues like pancreatitis, diabetes, heart disease and the number one killer of dogs, cancer. October is a beautiful time of year everywhere to get outside. Walking your dog on a daily basis not only increases the endorphins in both human and canine brains {happy chemicals} but it improves the bond between dog parent and dog.

Initially founded for October 1st, as a "one day" holiday, Colleen later felt that one day was just not enough time to stimulate a continued walking program, so she then founded National Walk Your Dog Week to be celebrated the entire first week of October. She believes that when people witness the changes in their beloved dogs by giving them a week of exercise they normally don't get, not only will they see a massive difference in their dog's behavior but the dog parent will feel so good...they won't want to stop. This not only helps to save the life of the dog by promoting proper health and quelling behavior issues that might otherwise land them in the shelter facing euthanasia - but it will also help to improve the health of the human companion and possibly save their life down the road as well.According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, more than 40 percent of dogs...a total of about 17 million in the United States, are overweight.

"If you walk your dog just 30 minutes a day, you will meet national recommendations for heart health, says Paige. Asking your children to accompany you by walking the dog themselves while you supervise, will set them up for a better chance that they'll continue to not only crave physical exercise, but that they'll be responsible dog stewards when they're adults. Remember.... a tired a good dog!"

Walking with Dogs

Make a Promise

40 percent of dogs...a total of about 17 million in the United States alone, are overweight. If you walk your dog just 30 minutes a day, you (and your dog) will meet national recommendations for heart health. Make the pledge to start walking your dog for at least 30 minutes a day for a week and email us to share your experience and the changes you notice in your dog and yourself in just seven days.

Image by Camylla Battani

Less is More

What your dog eats makes such a difference in their energy level which in turn, can help quell behavior problems. Make a pledge to change your dog's diet to one that is free of corn, wheat, sugar, by-products and chemicals and you'll see a major change within a week! Don't forget to ask your vet how to change food gradually, as to not cause an upset digestive system.

Image by freestocks

Stress Detox

Even if you just walked 2-3 times a week for 20 minutes each and your dog will feel phenomenal!! If you can run your'll notice a faster change in his or her behavior. Positive changes in behavior lead to a happier you, which in turn, leads to a happy dog and a happy home. A happy home means that Spot won't get dumped at the shelter because no one can deal with his behavior issues anymore.


There are many ways that you can celebrate this fun and healthy holiday that not only will save lives through improved health, but can also help save the lives of dogs in shelters. We encourage the public to adopt a new furry family member to make walks more fun and fulfilling..... and life, all the more more meaningful.


Image by Andriyko Podilnyk

© 2023 National Walk Your Dog Week. All Rights Reserved.

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