Dogs love to get outside and run off energy round the park, so they make great running partners. My Husky loves to run alongside me every morning, and now he is in the routine I’ve never got the option to slack. The problem is that most dogs are not ready to run long distances from the get go as just like you they need training.
So how do you train them?
Well for starters you need to make sure that your dog is healthy and okay to run. Puppies will not be able to run until they are nearly fully grown (around 18 months), and older dogs, well don’t tend to handle running to well. If you are unsure if you should start running with your dog, consult your vet on their annual check-up but 9/10 everything will be fine.
Just like when you started to run, build up the mileage slowly. I’d recommend using something like the couch to 5k programme where you use a run/walk method as this allows the muscles and connective tissue to adapt gradually avoiding injury to your pup.
Use a running leash! When I first took Hulk out for a run I ended up being pulled for most of the run as he wanted to go a lot faster than I could manage. If I hadn’t had him on a running lead I think he would of ran off with my arm! These leads also allow you to maintain good running technique as you are hand free. I use Barkswell running lead as its recommended in pets at home.
Run on trials if you can. Dogs love trail running, and just like trail running is better for your body, it is better for theirs too so it’s a win-win.
If you need some water or electrolytes while you’re running, the chances are your dog is gasping for a drink too. Carrying a dog bowl in your flip belt may be rather difficult (although this collapsible range is handy!), so you may want to plan your route past shops/parks that have dog bowls outside. If not think about picking up a collapsable dogs bowl that hooks onto your running belt or jacket.