Running with your dog is a great idea and the benefits alone. If you’re not running with your dog yet, definitely start. If you run and don’t already have a dog of your own, consider adopting one from a shelter. A dog is a runner’s best friend and their best trainer and motivator. Running with a dog is a great option, but there are a few things you should know before you head out with your pet for your first training session.
Why run with a dog?
Running with a dog has benefits for both humans and pets. A four-legged dog can effectively motivate you to train, both in terms of regularity and pace. It is hard to meet a human who can run faster than a dog. It is our pet in this duo that will be the better and faster athlete. And training with better ones is always more fruitful and developing. When running with a dog, we are also less exposed to dangers. Even if our pet is not trained to defend itself, just by barking it can scare off attackers, make noise and alert others. Running with a dog at night or in desolate areas is safer and two dogs are always better together. Running with a dog can also save a lot of time. Instead of walking your dog and then going out for a jog, you can combine these two activities. Spending time together with the dog has a positive effect on our relationship. It means a lot to the pet, and running together with your master is great fun. A cool, active, athletic person should also have a cool, active and athletic dog. Let’s not take this fun away from the pet.
Can you run with every dog?
It would seem that running is the most natural thing in the world for a dog to do. However, not all dogs can run and not every dog can go on long runs or competitions. Restrictions are based on several factors such as the age of the dog, health status and breed.
Which dogs should you not run with?
Longer and more intense running is not advisable for very young dogs. Puppies under one year of age should not be over-exercised. Young dogs are not yet fully developed and intensive running can contribute to many defects and degenerations, e.g. dysplasia. A smaller dog develops a little faster than a large one, and a lot depends on the breed, but let’s assume that until our pet is a year old he should not train too intensively. Older dogs are also not made for running. Of course, everything depends on the state of health and well-being of our companion. It is best to keep an eye on your pet and consult your vet. Sick and overweight dogs should not run. Although running is strongly associated with dogs, some breeds should not run, such as dachshunds and bassets, i.e. dogs with short legs and long bodies. Also very small and delicate breeds such as Yorkies and Miniature Pinschers. Of course, running is not the same as running a one-and-a-half-kilometre walk is one thing and a half marathon at a pace of 5 min/km is another. Short distances and leisurely jogs will not harm most dogs. However, if you are planning more intensive training with your pet, be sure to ask your vet for advice. Not everyone can run and it is the same for dogs.
Which dogs are best for running?
Most dogs can and do love to run. Some even should. Some of the best dog breeds for runners include greyhounds, spaniels, dalmatians, huskies, labradors, German shepherds, colts and setters. Surprisingly, poodles are also quite suitable for running. All mutts are also said to be suitable, but it depends on what mix the mutt is. If you are planning to buy or adopt a dog that you want to run with, it is worth considering its predisposition to the sport.
What to look out for when running with a dog?
When starting to run with a dog, it is important to consider the dog’s fitness. It is no wonder that a dog who has been rather a couch potato (through no fault of his own ;)) gets fed up after running a kilometre. Regular training and a gradual increase in intensity is the key to success. Let’s not set the bar too high for our pets at the very beginning. Let’s observe the dog and not force it to make too much effort. After all, we don’t want to court him to death. It is important to remember that dogs cope much less well with high temperatures. They should not run in the heat. They shouldn’t even spend too long in the sun at all on hot days. Fortunately, autumn is coming, it’s getting cooler and you can safely run with your dog. However, let’s not forget about water for your pet. If possible, try to run on soft ground such as grass or forest paths. Dogs have no shoes and the soft pads of their paws hit the hard asphalt. By law, we should keep our pets on a lead in most public places. This is as much about the safety of other people as it is about our dog.