Program Aims to Help Dogs, Owners Stay Fit

Initiative encourages participation in dog walking clubs to promote healthy lifestyles.

Iams and Shape magazine have partnered to create the “Walk Your Dog, Make Life Better” program, an initiative to help dogs and their owners become more fit and have a stronger bond.

The program encourages dog owners to join or create dog walking clubs, which promote healthy lifestyles and generate fun social contact, according to the active lifestyle publication.

In addition, Shape’s March through May issues include advice on how dog owners can maximize their time with their four-legged friends.

Shape will also launch a microsite, dedicated to informing consumers about this program and how they can become involved. Through the website, dog owners can upload photos, chat with other dog owners, and interact with new friends in their area to start their own clubs.

The website encourages pet owners to send customizable e-cards to their friends and family to spread the word. For each card sent, Shape will make a donation to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

“The ASPCA is thrilled to work with both Shape and Iams to promote the health of our nation’s pets and their families,” said Ed Sayres, president and chief executive officer of the ASPCA. “The bond that Americans share with their four-legged friends is so strong, and taking the time to exercise and play with your pets — improving their quality of life — is one of the best ways to honor that bond.”

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