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New Year, New Friends, New Wellbeing

Merry Twixmas! The latest name for that strange lull between the Christmas and New Year festivities, which is also a popular time for giving some thought to the coming year and making those New Year Resolutions.

Sometimes it’s the big things like changing job, moving house, learning a new skill but, if you’re like me, losing those extra festive pounds, improving fitness and mental wellbeing is also high on the list and one of the very best and enjoyable ways to achieve them is to go dog-walking regularly.

But, what do you do if you don’t have a dog of your own? Well, if you live in Buntingford or the surrounding area, perhaps becoming a volunteer dog walker for RATS could be the answer?

Whilst our rescue dogs are waiting patiently for their new homes, they love to enjoy the stimulation that walks can provide them with and we’re incredibly lucky to have some beautiful countryside right on our doorstep. Even a thirty-minute walk makes a real difference to their day and recent research has shown that it could do the same for you.

It’s well known that regular physical activity can reduce blood pressure and cholesterol levels and help reduce the risk of Type 2 Diabetes (as well as many other health benefits) but it’s now recognised that spending time with nature has mental benefits too, which is how volunteering to help walk our lovely hounds can help. Being out in the fresh air can improve your sleep, reduce stress, improve your mood and even help to reduce the effects of SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) and it’s an ideal activity for all adult age groups.

If you’re interested to know more, the mental health charity, Mind, has some useful info on how bringing nature and being around animals can help to benefit your everyday life.

Here at RATS, we’re always keen to welcome new volunteers and our canine residents love making new friends, so combining a regular walk in the countryside with getting to know them (and us) could be just what you’re looking for in 2022!

If you’d like to find out more, we’d love to hear from you. You can email us at or phone us on 01763 289827.

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