Broadstone Employee Benefits

The best way to think about January – it’s ‘walk your dog month’!

Blue Monday has gone, pay day still seems like it cannot come fast enough, and it is getting harder and harder to keep those New Year’s resolutions, right? The salads are getting boring, it’s cold and dark outside, and the Easter chocolates are creeping onto the supermarket shelves.

January is not just about ‘Veganuary’ or ‘Dry January, though – it is also ‘National Walk Your Dog Month’! We are a nation of pet lovers, with an estimated 59% of households owning a pet going into 2021 [1]; many of which are cute pooches. As well as the friendship, love, and loyalty that dog owners can appreciate, there are also many health benefits related to walking in general – which having a dog encourages us to do daily.

So, this month (and all year long) – it is important for us all to encourage each other to get up off the sofa, get moving and most importantly to not let those sub-zero temperatures get us down. After all, the fact that it is January really does not matter to dogs as they need exercise all year round. The best way to keep both them and us active is to take them for regular walks.

If you are still not convinced, it is important to consider the benefits to you of getting out into nature, with or without a dog. Bupa recognizes [2] several health and wellbeing benefits relating to dog walking, including:

  • You’re likely to be more active
  • It helps us to relax & de-stress
  • Motivation to move – having a dog looking at you with those big puppy eyes is sure to get you moving.
  • Happiness & social connection – getting out and talking to other dog walkers.

The evidence is inconclusive, but it has been suggested that compared to dog owners who walk their dogs regularly, people who don’t own dogs may have a higher risk of high BMI, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and depression.

The good news is that walking is accessible to everyone and it does not take much to see improvements in your health. On top of this, many of us now wear smartwatches or carry smartphones that can track our steps, heart rate and calories burned to make it easier to instantly see the benefits a brisk walk has.

But how exactly does this relate to you, as an employer?

Ok, so it is not necessarily practical to get an office dog to improve the motivation of your staff, but there are many staff perks that you can offer to encourage your employees to look after their physical health, get moving and generally keep themselves fit and well while at work.

If you are considering technology discounts (including smartwatches), private health insurance options; or even if you are not sure what to offer – we have a team of expert benefits consultants with years of experience, who would be more than happy to advise you and see how we can help.

(Or even if you just want more reasons to adopt a dog – they appear to be endless!)