“Is my dog an ideal companion for running?”
“Can I take my dog along when I train in the rough terrains?”
“Can I bring my dog with me as I run into the woods for extreme activities or even go camping with your dog?”
“Wait, how far can a dog run into the woods without getting tired?”
“How far can a dog run in one shot?”
“Can a dog’s endurance be improved over time? How?”
If you are an athlete – whether by profession or by habitual passion— and a dog lover at the same time, these questions have probably popped in your mind at least once. Trust me; I know what it is like to be in that position because I have asked those questions a hundred times before finally coming across the answers one by one through experience.
Well, wonder no more and seek no more because by the end of this article, you will learn how you can take your dog running with you without him or her getting tired quickly. Just like you, your dog can potentially become as resilient as he or she could ever be.
For a more physically fit dog that you could surely take out to the woods as you complete miles and miles of running, take note of the following steps:
1. Make Sure That Your Dog Is Meant For Running
Before anything else, you need to guarantee that your dog is physically suited for endurance training and long-running. A lot of dog breeds are bred to serve and/or work. Hence, the sturdier built and robust physical capability.
The most common dog breeds that can last hours of long, steady running include Border Collies, Catahoulas, Dalmatians, German Shorthand Pointers, Parson Russell Terriers, Portuguese Water Dogs, Rhodesian Ridgebacks, Standard Poodles, Vizslas, and Weimaraners. German Shorthand Pointers, Portuguese Water Dogs, Vizslas, and Weimaraners can be taken out on the trails as well.
On the other hand, dog breeds such as Beagles, Belgian Sheepdogs, English Setters, Greyhounds, Pharaoh Hounds, and Pit Bulls can handle short runs.
If the breed of your dog hasn’t been aforementioned, but you can tell that he or she has long legs and a muscular body structure, it’s possible that you can train him or her to become a better runner.
2. Conduct Proper Conditioning
Nothing’s ever achieved overnight. When enhancing your dog’s endurance and stamina for running, you have to take it one step at a time.
A dog will only listen to a master whom he or she trusts. Consequently, you need to build a relationship with your dog. By doing so, it would be easier for you to communicate and to understand each other.
Once you’ve established this unique relationship, try bringing your dog out for a fun jog or a brisk walk at the park. You could do this every day or every other day, depending on your exercise schedule. If you’ve noticed that he or she enjoys it, it’s a clear sign that he or she may enjoy covering longer mileages with you.
3. Be Sensitive
As a responsible dog owner, it is your duty always to be mindful of signs that he or she might be sick, getting tired, or even unhappy. Don’t be too hard on your dog by forcing him or her to do things that he or she cannot. If possible, add a little more patience into the mix.
Pushing your dog to his or her limits when he or she apparently cannot handle it any more will only strain the relationship you’ve built. The key here is to make the whole thing less about you and more about what’s best for your dog.
4. Make Conditioning And Training More Fun And Engaging
If you’ve noticed that your dog is not entirely happy joining you on your routinary exercise (i.e. he or she is:
- Continually barking;
- Often downcast;
- Has no appetite;
- Among others
- There might be some changes you have to make.
For example, you can ask your dog to catch a frisbee or fetch a tennis ball. Simple activities such as these are physical in nature, enabling you to train your dog’s stamina without too much pressure on both of you.
You may also want to create a rewards system that your dog will surely respond to – you can incentivize him or her with his or her favorite food for every kilometer he or she covers. Dogs exhibit more enthusiasm in what you want them to do when they know that something is in it for them.
The list of fun things to do while exercising could go on and on, and you have to be creative and know what keeps your dog interested.
Check this out: http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/enriching-your-dogs-life
5. Keep Your Dog Hydrated At All Times
Just like how humans need to stay hydrated at all times to perform well while doing physical activities, dogs need their body fluids replaced as well. Make sure that your dog gets to drink enough water every day, whether you are out and about or simply resting at home. It’s one of the basic yet often undermined health practices among dog owners.
All things said, don’t forget to pack your dog’s water along with yours when you go out on the track or trail. This is important especially when you are running under highly humid conditions.
Find out more at http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/guide/dog-dehydration-water-needs
6. Prefer Quality Over Quantity
Honestly, it is not important how long your dog could run in one shot. What matters the most is that he or she is always healthy and physically fit enough to take on any physical challenge at any time.
Some dog owners want immediate results. The thing is, you cannot expect your dog to cover 20 to 30 miles in an hour or less when he or she has only been exposed to acute physical activity for a week or so. He or she has to be conditioned and trained correctly through daily exercise for him or her to perform at his or her best.
Just like how it is for humans, it is also a lifetime process for pets such as dogs to become better at what they do. The ultimate goal here is always to strive to become better every waking hour, and your dog can only do that with your guidance and support.
How far can a dog run into the woods or at the track, how fast a dog can run without getting tired, how many miles can a dog cover in one shot— all the answers to these questions will largely depend on how great of a trainer you are.
Remember, to become a great running dog trainer, you must:
- Make sure that your dog is physically capable of endurance training
- Slowly condition your dog by establishing a rapport with him or her
- Understand his or her needs in order for you to respond appropriately
- Focus on what makes your dog happy and interested
- Provide everything he or she needs to maintain a healthy life
- Always strive for gradual progress and not an overnight success.
Do you have any further suggestions on how we can train dog runners into becoming better physically? Tell us about your experiences with your beloved furball!
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