Running with dogs: 5 training tips
We’ve all encountered running with dogs, whether it’s your own or someone else’s.
Just line up at your average parkrun and you’ll find plenty of canine competition.
I’ve lost track of the amount of times a sprightly, jet-pawed Jack Russell has sauntered past me. It’s not as bad as men with buggies but talk about soul-destroying.
Really it would be annoying if they weren’t so friendly and furry.
Like most things to do with running, there’s advice out there for getting the best out of you and your pooch. Some of which comes courtesy of experts at Canagan, the UK’s leading natural grain-free pet food.
Apparently the best breeds to jog with include lurchers (very short, not long distances). Then come Labradors, Huskies and Border Collies, providing you can corral the latter two breeds into staying on track.
5 tips for running with dogs
Build up endurance steadily. Don’t go too far too soon
Just like humans, some dogs may need their own version of Couch to 5k if they aren’t used to running. Even those that are more athletic need to build up their endurance.
Bring water for your dog
Dogs’ way of cooling down is panting, which can quickly lead to dehydration. Make sure you bring fluids for both of you on the run.
Stay present and pay attention to the signs your dog is giving you
Don’t go so quickly that you’re out of breath and can’t give them instructions
These runs are unlikely to be your personal bests when it comes to your speed. There may be abrupt stops for sniffing and peeing (both dog and owner).
This is more likely when you’re first training them to get into the rhythm of running alongside you (rather than in front, behind wandering between the two). If you’re a runner and training for speed, it may be best to leave the dog at home for those specific runs.
Don’t forget bags!
Well, when you’ve gotta go etc. I’ve not seen a Portaloo that a dog is allowed into yet.
Canagan add that how often you run with your dog comes down to its age and breed.
Adult dogs generally need between 30 minutes and two hours of daily exercise. This can include walking, running, playing fetch, agility and other enrichment-based games.
An important thing to remember is that sometimes your dog won’t know what’s good for them and the natural urge to run and play can override pain; some may not know their limits.
Play time and time with you can be too appealing, so it will be up to you to put the brakes on if they get over-excited!