Is Jogging Or Running Safe For Dogs?

Is it dangerous to take your dog jogging or, on the contrary, is it recommended to go for a run with your dog? In fact, the answer to this seemingly simple question depends on several factors.

A question of race and morphology

Contrary to popular belief, not all dog breeds are cut out for running long distances and not all dogs are able to accompany their owner on their jogging session.

In reality, the ability of dogs to run long distances is largely related to their morphological characteristics and what their breed was originally developed for.

For example, Huskies have the ability to run long as their breed was specifically developed for their endurance and ability to pull sleds over long distances. Australian Shepherds or White Swiss Shepherds can also follow their master on their jogs as they have been specifically bred to spend long days in the fields herding and herding herds.

Is Jogging Or Running Safe For Dogs?

More generally, medium to large breed dogs with long legs and light builds will find it easier to keep up with their owner while jogging .

On the other hand, some breeds of dogs are not suited for running at all. These include pugs, bulldogs, French bulldogs, boxers, Pekingese, shih tzus and any other dog with a flattened muzzle and flattened face that is grouped under the group of brachycephalic dogs. These dogs have narrower airways and they exhibit breathing difficulties that are accentuated by physical exercise and heat. It is therefore not safe for these dogs to run for an extended period of time.

Small dogs or short-legged dogs like the Corgi or Basset hound also have a harder time keeping up with humans when it comes to running long distances. They are obviously able to run but may struggle to keep up with their owner on a long run.

Also, don't try to take a big, heavy dog ​​for a long run, it's just not made for that and you risk hurting it. 

 A matter of age

Even if your dog is "made" for running, you should avoid taking him for too long a run if he is too young or too old.

Puppies that haven't finished growing, and whose bones and joints are still developing, can suffer permanent musculoskeletal damage if they start running too early.

In general, a puppy should not accompany its owner on a jog until it has finished growing. Generally, it is not advisable to take a medium breed dog for a run before the age of 8 months, or even later for large dogs. The best way to determine if your dog is big enough to start running alongside you is to ask your veterinarian for advice. This will be able to determine if your dog's growth plates have closed enough for him to run safely.

Over-aged dogs may also find it more difficult to run. First of all, they no longer have the same endurance as younger dogs, and pathologies can develop with age that make physical activity more difficult, painful or even more risky for their health.
If your dog is older, have him checked regularly by a veterinarian to make sure your dog is still able to keep up with you over long distances.

A matter of health

Is Jogging Or Running Safe For Dogs?

Regardless of your dog's age and your dog's breed, it's best to always seek advice from your veterinarian before taking your dog on a run with you.

All dogs are indeed likely to suffer from health problems that would make this activity particularly dangerous or inappropriate.

Cardiac , respiratory, muscular, bone and joint problems as well as obesity problems can indeed constitute contraindications for your dog.

Take advantage of a visit to your veterinarian, such as your dog's annual vaccination consultation, to take stock with your veterinarian and give your pet a little check-up to check that he is well suited to accompany you in your sports activities.

A matter of weather

Regardless of your dog's physical abilities and health, you should always consider the outside temperature before taking your dog for a run with you.

Thus, do not take your dog for a run if it is too hot because prolonged physical activity will raise your dog's internal temperature dangerously. Always keep in mind that your dog does not have the ability to regulate its body temperature by sweating like humans. The risk is then that he is the victim of a potentially fatal heat stroke .

If the weather is hot, therefore prefer to leave it at home, in the cool, rather than taking it with you.