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Dogs Health Forum

Do dogs make us happy and healthy?

Part of 2018 Health Forums series
Does having a dog in your life make you happy and healthy? And do dogs benefit from having humans as friends?

They might be “man’s best friend” but does having a dog in your life make you happy and healthy? And do dogs benefit from having humans as friends?

These are among the questions we’ll explore in what should be an entertaining and educational Sydney Ideas Health Forum.

“There’s plenty of anecdotal evidence suggesting dog ownership is beneficial for human health but there’s little solid evidence to back the claim,” says Professor Stamatakis, who heads a major University of Sydney research effort intended to answer a host of questions on the health benefits of dog ownership.

“Dog ownership is popular in Australia with over 40 percent of households owning at least one dog,” says Associate Professor Stamatakis, “so our findings should be helpful to millions of people.

Join the forum to hear more about the impact of human-dog relationships on health issues such as physical activity, obesity, cardiovascular disease, cancer, disability and mental health.

This event was held at the University of Sydney on Wednesday 27 June 2018. There is no podcast for this event.


- Professor Emmanuel Stamatakis, Leader of the dog ownership and human health node, Charles Perkins Centre

- Professor Michael Valenzuela, Leader of the Regenerative Neurosciences Group, Brain and Mind Centre

- Dr Anne Fawcett, Veterinarian and lecturer in veterinary science, School of Veterinary Science

- Dr Meryl Lovarini, Lecturer in Occupational Therapy, Faculty of Health Sciences

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