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5 Tips to Make Your Dog a Great Running Companion

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The dog days of summer are here, and if you want your dog to be your running companion, there are some safety tips to keep in mind. Empower your pup partner with five dog-friendly running tips from Dr. Steve Marks, Associate Dean and Director of Veterinary Medical Services at North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine, and see if your dog’s breed makes it a good natural fit to run with, below.

5 Tips for Running with Your Dog

1. Ease In

“Some dogs are just not going to be good runners unless you really start out slow, like hiking and long walks,” says Dr. Marks. Just like you wouldn’t expect your friend who doesn’t run to join you for 6 miles right out the gate, your dog won’t be ready right away either. Consider starting a Couch to 5K program with them.

2. Plan Your Route

Try not to stray too far from home before you know how your dog will react to their new routine. Make sure your route is safe for you and your pet. And if you don’t want to carry water with you, scope out nearby water fountains as well as cafes and businesses that leave water dishes outside.

3. Watch the Weather

Dogs aren’t able to tell you if the weather doesn’t feel right to them. Dr. Marks’ rule of thumb? “If it’s intolerable to you, it’s probably intolerable to [them].” Also consider the ground conditions: Keep their paws off hot, black pavement on summer days and away from damaging rock salt on icy days.

4. Know Your Dog

Information is power. How does your dog react to other dogs? What about cars passing by? How are they on leash? Are they so eager to please that they won’t stop even if they’re tired? Knowing the answer to these questions will help keep you and your pet running safely and your dog eager to continue being your run companion.

5. Consider the Extremes

If your pooch is older, or has a bone, neurologic, or heart disease, it’s best to consult with your vet. Same goes for dogs that are young (the canine skeletal system doesn’t fully develop until about two years). “These are not prohibitive,” says Dr. Marks. “It just means you want to use some caution.”

Read more at: https://www.womensrunning.com/culture/running-with-dogs/?utm_source=Six+Minute+Mile&utm_campaign=d898f6ba82-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2020_07_07_04_51_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_6e5b2f993e-d898f6ba82-5366209