Muddy trainers and a dog's paws

The ACT Paws & Shoes Challenge

Team up with your dog and take on our Paws & Shoes challenge

The benefits of walking your dog are HUGE! Keeping your dog trim, healthy and mentally stimulated is vital to a long and happy life. Exercise also helps your dog to rest well when they are at home. For humans, a dog walk is a stealth form of exercise that we don't even really notice but it works wonders for our physical and mental health. With the average pooch taking you out for 150 minutes’ walk every week, together you are a health and wellbeing superteam!

In the New Year, we invite you to combine their paws with your shoes and embark on our Paws & Shoes dog-walking challenge. Can you reach 1,000 minutes of walking in 4 weeks?

With a flexible start date to make it accessible for festive holiday plans, the aim is to walk 1,000 minutes within 4 weeks. You can adjust the amount of minutes to make it a realistic goal for you and your dog. We understand every team's personal challenge will be different. Whatever target you set yourself, it's a fantastic chance to raise money for the ACT, get fit and give your dog an excuse to howl at you for more walks! 

How does it work?

Walking shoes and paws

1. Sign up

We need a few details to get you and your pooch on your way!

A dog wears the Paws & Shoes bandana

2. Get your bandana!

For £5 per dog you'll receive a special bandana for your teammate to wear!

A dog walker stands with a dog ether side

3. Start fundraising!

Download our fundraising pack for advice and inspiration.

A man walks his dog in the woods

4. Start walking and tracking your minutes

Keep track of your team's progress. Don't forget to share updates on your fundraising page and social media. Your supporters will want to see you and your pooch out and about!

A woman gives her dog a 'high five'

5. Tell us how you're getting on

Tell us how your dog-walking challenge is progressing. What are you enjoying? How many minutes are you up to? How much have your fundraised? We'll be creating an online gallery to showcase our Paws & Shoes dogs wearing their bandanas so please send us photos!

Look after each other!

Your dog’s needs and capabilities come first. For some dogs, a challenge will be a walk around the block. For others, it's a ten mile hike. Just remember to build time, distance and stamina gradually. You know your dog and what is right for them. If realistically you need to reduce your challenge, do it! The most important thing is to have fun, spend quality time with your pooch and raise money to help poorly pets get better so they can start enjoying walks again too.

And remember, if your dog needs a rest day, then you can still get your daily minutes in on a solitary walk while they take some time out!

A pair of brown boots, autumn leaves on the pavement and a dog's paws

Did you know?

Walking just 15 minutes a day can lower your blood pressure and improve joint health.

Three women walk a dog over the hills

Our top 3 tips

1. Develop a routine and prioritise the time. It won't be long until your dog reminds you when it's time to walk!

2. Find walking companions. Instead of meeting friends for coffee and cake, could you meet them for a walk?

3. Stay safe. Wear reflective clothing if it's dark, carry a mobile phone, water and let someone know where you'll be.

For over 30 years we've been fundraising to support the RVC's hospitals, education and research. We couldn't do it without you.

To everyone who joins our Paws & Shoes Challenge, THANK YOU.

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Contact us

The Royal Veterinary College Animal Care Trust
Hawkshead Lane
North Mymms

+44 (0)1707 666237