Whether you already run five miles per day or you’re just getting started, your furry best friend can help you make the most of your running routine.
What makes dogs the perfect running partners? Dogs love to run and spend time outdoors. And they have four legs. It’s no wonder studies show dog parents are in better physical shape than those without pups. Dogs truly make our lives better and make ideal running partners.
So, how can you safely start a running routine with your furry best friend? These 3 steps will keep you and your pooch safe while staying active and getting fit.
1. Take a Quick Trip to the Vet
Not all dogs are built to be Olympic runners. Make sure your fuzzy friend is ready to run by getting the “Ok” from your vet.
It’s not recommended that a dog begin a running routine if they :
- Aren’t fully grown
- Are a senior doggo
- Have a flat nose or face
- Are obese
- Experience joint pain
2. Make a Plan and Pack Accordingly
Before you leash-up your pup and tighten your laces, make sure you have a safe route picked out and the appropriate safety gear.
- Try to choose a path that is well-lit with a sidewalk.
- Preview your route to make sure it’s safe for dogs. This means no broken glass and enough room for your dog to run beside you.
- Outfit your pup in reflective vest to add visibility. This is also extremely important when you first start running with your dog since dogs tend to accidentally turn into the road or break free from their leash when getting acclimated to running.
- Bring water, a collapsible bowl, and your cell phone.
3. Condition Your Dog: Slow and Steady Wins the Race
Does your dog bounce and leap when it’s time for a walk? Great! This means he is ready to go. It doesn’t necessarily mean your pooch is ready for a marathon, though.
When dogs are having fun, they don’t tend to take breaks like they need to. This can become dangerous. So, take breaks and start running sessions of a mile or less before increasing distance.
Jogging and intermittent walking can help your pup adjust.
Always check your dog’s paws before and after a run, especially before he develops callouses.
So, get out there and enjoy a healthy life and some extra bonding with your best friend! Stay safe, stay active, and stay motivated!