Dogs and your humans, get ready for the walk of the year – registrations for the BIG Walkies event in Cardiff open online today.

This year the RSPCA are joining paws with health and life insurers Vitality – and we are asking you and your dog to join us in the fresh air to stretch your legs and raise money to help our less fortunate dog pals.

On Sunday, 15 May this year the RSPCA’s biggest ever Big Walkies will be coming to Cardiff’s Bute Park.

BWDogs and their owners will take part in either a 2.5k or a 4k sponsored walk around the park to raise money to help dogs and other animals in RSPCA care.

To register visit www.rspca.org.uk/dogwalk and sign your dog up today.

Once you receive your fundraising pack – which includes a bandana for your four legged friend – the Big Walkies team are then asking you to tweet pictures of your dog using #BigWalkies

Animal lovers without dogs can also take part or volunteer at the events, and hopefully some of our star rescue dogs will be there on the day to meet and get to know.

The events, also taking place in England, will build upon the success of 2015, which saw more than 3,500 dogs, 6,000 owners and 750 volunteers raise over £100,000 to help animals most in need.

RSPCA Cymru events manager Bethan Spear said: “We are really looking forward to the RSPCA Big Walkies in Cardiff this year.

“We are so pleased Vitality are on board to help us spread the message that walking your dog is fantastic exercise for both owner and pooch.

“We hope the people of Cardiff and across Wales and surrounding areas will come out to support RSPCA Cymru, get some fresh air, meet new people and help us raise vital funds for animal welfare.”

Neville Koopowitz, CEO of Vitality, said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with the RSPCA to launch Big Walkies and we’re really looking forward to the event in Cardiff. A dog not only provides companionship for owners, but also makes them more active. Our research has found nearly three in five dog owners exercise more now they have a pet and many of our Vitality members have told us how important their dog is in helping them enjoy a healthier and more active life.

“Mounting evidence shows it’s the small things that make a big difference to our long term health, whether it’s a short walk or taking the stairs instead of the lift. Big Walkies provides a great opportunity to encourage the nation to take those first steps to a healthier lifestyle and help raise money for a fantastic cause at the same time.”

For more information please visit www.rspca.org.uk/dogwalk