How dogs could pose a risk for older Americans
Researchers found that the number of emergency room visits due to fractures associated with walking leashed dogs increased significantly nationwide from about 1,700 in 2004 to nearly 4,400 in 2017 among people 65 years of age or older. The majority of these patients were women, and the most common types of fractures were hip and wrist.
Dr. Aribindi also offers these tips for seniors to reduce the risk of falls while dog walking:
- Consider performing exercises such as yoga and tai chi to strengthen your muscles and improve your gait.
- Enroll in a pet obedience class to teach your dog the proper way to walk on a lead. Walking your dog can be a great exercise for both you and your dog; however, it can also be hazardous if your dog is not properly trained, Dr. Aribindi says.
- Remember to wear the appropriate foot wear.
- Choose a safe route.
- Carry your mobile device in case of any emergencies.
- If you feel yourself falling while walking your dog, try to limit your injuries by bending your elbows and knees and attempt to roll versus reaching out with your hands and trying to catch yourself.
About the Author
Lynn Hutley, health enews contributor, is coordinator of public affairs and marketing at Advocate BroMenn Medical Center and Advocate Eureka Hospital in central Illinois. Having grown up in a family-owned drug store, it is no surprise that Lynn has spent almost 18 years working in the health care industry. She has a degree in human resources management from Illinois State University and is always ready to tackle Trivia Night.