New Bern
82° F
Clear
Clear
Greenville
79° F
Clear
Clear
Jacksonville
81° F
Clear
Clear
Advertisement

CrossPaw Fitness: A workout for kids and man's best friend

By Tori Shaw
Published On: Sep 10 2012 04:31:08 PM CDT
Updated On: Sep 10 2012 04:48:04 PM CDT
PITT COUNTY -

Every Saturday, Michael Vann teaches a workout good enough for six legs.  Kids are working out with dogs in a program called CrossPaw Fitness.  Students get their exercise, and the dogs get to play.

"Life at the Humane Society is the same thing every day.  They get out a lot, but they see a lot of the same people .  It's very routine so CrossPaw Fitness is something totally new," said Katie Benson with the Humane Society of Eastern North Carolina in Greenville.

The local trainer was approached by a local pediatrician about starting the program and being a dog owner himself the idea wasn't too far fetched.

"We can do this with the kids.  Maybe it will help to inspire the kids to exercise," said Vann.

The idea for the program stemmed from a similar camp in Seattle, WA.  Vann had to adjust the workouts so they will be fun for the dogs and the kids.

"You have to because these dogs we're working with are young puppies.  Their attention span is a lot less than it would be on an adult dog.  So, we don't do the exercises as long," said Vann.

In one hour, there is a warm up, water breaks and an obstacle course.  The kids are building muscles and the puppies build their confidence.

"They get loved by humans and that makes them feel more comfortable because they know they're being praised for doing the right thing," said one camper, Caroline Vithalan.

It's a step in the right direction towards childhood health and forever homes. 

If you would like to sign up for the six week session, you may contact Pitt County Children Health Services.