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City launches pet-friendly approach to promote employee health

8/2/2013, 1:49 p.m.

Richmond has launched what it calls "an innovative" model to promote employee health and wellness while at the same time providing some much needed support to Richmond Animal Care and Control (RAC&C). The program, called Walk-A-Hound, Lose-A-Pound, is part of the Richmond and Richmond Public Schools Employee Wellness Program and provides a mechanism for city employees to help shelter dogs get regular physical activity.

“An active lifestyle is vitally important to the overall health of our city,” said Mayor Dwight C. Jones. “I welcome this new walking program to encourage our employees and residents to become more active, and be able to enjoy the outdoors with a great walking companion from Animal Care and Control.”

The dogs that are walked are all up to date on shots and have been behavior tested. While the program is directed toward city employees, friends and family can join them for their scheduled walks. City employees can volunteer to walk the dogs for any distance and amount of time. Hours to walk the dogs are Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturdays 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sundays, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“The health of our pets is our top priority at RAC&C,” said Christie Chipps Peters, director of RAC&C. “This will allow the opportunity for our shelter dogs to get on an exercise plan and employees and residents to get acquainted with our pet community.”

City residents who are interested in volunteering with RAC&C, should call 804-646-5584 to learn more.