Why It’s Important to Let Your Dog Sniff on Walks

Why It's Important to Let Your Dog Sniff, Unrushed, During Walks

By Roxanna Coldiron   March 19, 2021  as Published in Martha Stewart

An expert explains how, like humans, our pets need mental and physical exercise

Unlike cats that can thrive in an indoor-only environment, dogs need to walk on a daily basis. This outdoor exercise is good for their health and helps them to work off excess energy. It also gives them an opportunity to engage in their natural instincts, including sniffing the world around them—and this is why we should let them stop and smell along the way. “Dogs were born to sniff! They have adapted mastery sniffing and sensory abilities over thousands of years and use it to investigate their surroundings,” explains Dr. Gabrielle Fadl, DVM, medical director and veterinarian at Bond Vet. “From sniffing a tree to another dog’s rump, our furry friends spend time sniffing things as a way to either distinguish its components or gather information about its environment.”  Read More…

Staying Active While Social Distancing: Questions and Answers

Posted on April 7, 2020 by ODPHP

Why is it important for me to be active?

Physical activity can provide immediate benefits. Physical activity can help to boost your mood, reduce stress, improve sleep, and sharpen your focus — benefits that can be especially important during stressful times. Physical activity can also help you live a longer, healthier life by reducing the risk of many common chronic diseases, like type 2 diabetes and some cancers.

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Tips for Helping Older Adults Maintain Good Health at Home

By NRPA’s Healthy Aging in Parks Team | Posted on April 3, 2020

This is certainly an unprecedented time that has impacted our way of life in many ways. The aging service network is one network that has been disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic as efforts to keep older adults safe are implemented. But, there is no doubt that innovation comes in the midst of crisis, and local park and recreation professionals are moving full steam ahead to revamp and adapt to this new reality. Many park and recreation agencies have started to offer virtual programming and it has been rather exciting to hear and read about your strategies.

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The National Recreation and Park Association Statement on Playgrounds and Play Structures During COVID-19 Pandemic (March 30, 2020)

Nationally, more cities and states have implemented shelter in place orders, closed schools and businesses, and taken crucial measures to protect public health and slow the spread of COVID-19. As these changes in policy and practice have been implemented, many questions regarding the safety of public playgrounds and play structures have emerged.
The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) understands the important value playgrounds and play structures provide to communities across the country, especially for children. But, given the current situation and the guidance from public health officials on physical distancing, limiting in-person social interactions, avoiding spaces where people congregate in close quarters, and the concerns around transmission of the virus being spread through surfaces, we believe that playgrounds and play structures should temporarily close in an effort to reduce community spread.

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How to Communicate to Your Public about Safe Use of Parks

By Roxanne Sutton | Posted on April 1, 2020

It’s a paradox unlike any we’ve dealt with before. Parks and open spaces are being lauded for their mental and physical health benefits, while at the same time are being scrutinized for whether or not the public can continue to use them safely during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Keeping our parks and green spaces open and accessible relies upon everyone following public health best practices to stop the spread of COVID-19. Not everyone has a backyard or private green space, so people are turning to America’s backyard — our public parks and open spaces — in this time of crisis.

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