How to pick a dog who's a running companion (Read 1038 times)


Not dead. Yet.

    >> there is no such thing as a reputable breeder.

     

    That is an opinion, not a fact.

     

    And I vehemently disagree.

     

    I agree Stevie.  My breeder lives on a farm in Napa Valley and only has as many bitches pregnant as needed for the approved owners on her wait list.  She also has us sign a contract that if we decide to give up the dog for any reason at any time, we must return it to her.

     

    Just because there are a lot of a-holes out there doesn't make everyone an a-hole.

    How can we know our limits if we don't test them?


    Girl Parts

      Adopt a greyhound that has finished its racing career. They are very mild mannered and love to run.

       

      Greyhounds make a wonderful pets, they really do....  But are bad running partners.  They are sprinters, not distance dogs.  So if you want to go really, REALLY fast for a half mile, a greyhound is your dog.  Otherwise, look for dogs who are bred for herding or other high-energy breeds.

       

      Unfortunately, most general "pick your breed" profiles out there, on greyhounds particularly, are written by horribly mis-informed people.   A breed specific rescue/adoption group or chat forums for specific breeds will have better information on the breed.   A shelter will also be full of dogs with good running partner potential - the volunteers working with them should be able to point you in the right direction.

       

      Julia1971


        +1 on retired greyhounds being terrible running companions.  Mine did not like to run at all.  In fact, he barely liked walks.  He liked napping and that was about it.  I fostered one that was a bit more active but not by much.

        The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now. – Chinese Proverb

          Talk to local hunters about bird hunting dogs.  Any dog that is good for bird hunting must be able to run all day, while being well behaved.

           

          The neighbor's Labrador Retriever followed me for 16 miles two years ago, and was still running back and forth exploring at the end.  Although it was slowing down a little bit.

           

          The same dog followed me for 5 miles recently.  It was running back and forth until it sniffed a wolf track.  After that, it stayed real close to me.

           

          Not a lot of hunters in Berkeley.  Wink  But, I do see the value of that kind of dog.  I was reading about German Shorthaired Pointers, and they sound good.  But then I worry, what if I stop running?  Granted, this isn't a new hobby for me, but stuff happens.  And, my folks are excited to be dog-grandparents who can take the dog if we go out of town, but, while they are active with walking and such, they are older, and I assume their enthusiasm for dog-sitting would drop dramatically if we get a too-energetic dog who goes nuts at their house with less exercise than it gets at ours.  Of course, that just means we'd need an alternate dog-sitting plan, which we'd need anyway.  But in the spirit of taking all family members in to account, I think I need to take them into account too.

           

          Funny thing is it's a Lab that got me thinking about getting a dog to run with.  I was on a rail-trail in the 'burbs, and a yellow lab that had obviously gotten lost (had collar and tags) came dashing out of the bushes at me in a rural stretch.  It was very early in the morning, and I didn't have my phone anyway, but that dog ran with me for almost two miles until we ran in to another trail user with dogs himself, who had a phone with him and took over.  That dog just locked in about a yard to my side, and matched me step for step, just glancing at me from time to time to, well, say thanks, I think.   I don't think of labs as distance runners generally, though, but maybe I'm wrong?  Maybe it's just all the chubby ones I see around.


          Feeling the growl again

             

            Not a lot of hunters in Berkeley.  Wink  But, I do see the value of that kind of dog.  I was reading about German Shorthaired Pointers, and they sound good.  But then I worry, what if I stop running?  Granted, this isn't a new hobby for me, but stuff happens.  And, my folks are excited to be dog-grandparents who can take the dog if we go out of town, but, while they are active with walking and such, they are older, and I assume their enthusiasm for dog-sitting would drop dramatically if we get a too-energetic dog who goes nuts at their house with less exercise than it gets at ours.  Of course, that just means we'd need an alternate dog-sitting plan, which we'd need anyway.  But in the spirit of taking all family members in to account, I think I need to take them into account too.

             

            Funny thing is it's a Lab that got me thinking about getting a dog to run with.  I was on a rail-trail in the 'burbs, and a yellow lab that had obviously gotten lost (had collar and tags) came dashing out of the bushes at me in a rural stretch.  It was very early in the morning, and I didn't have my phone anyway, but that dog ran with me for almost two miles until we ran in to another trail user with dogs himself, who had a phone with him and took over.  That dog just locked in about a yard to my side, and matched me step for step, just glancing at me from time to time to, well, say thanks, I think.   I don't think of labs as distance runners generally, though, but maybe I'm wrong?  Maybe it's just all the chubby ones I see around.

             

            Do NOT get a bird hunting breed unless you have room for it to exercise on a very regular basis...not just when you decide to take it for a run.  We had to live in a small suburban house/yard for 8 months and even though my wife took my avatar running regularly, he was horribly depressed and unhappy.  I felt very guilty for putting him in that environment.  My spaniel is not happy unless he has a couple acres to entertain him.

             

            While he can run all day after birds, he only ran with my wife grudgingly....and refused to run more than a mile at my pace unless it was around our open field where it was more play than going for a run with me.  He'd do 10 miles that way.  Just because a breed can run all day doing a certain work activity does not mean they are going to take well to the constant, steady effort of a run.  Bird hunting is more like a human playing soccer than running.

            "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

             

            MJ5


            Chief Unicorn Officer

              I don't have much to offer in terms of common traits of a dog who'd be a good running partner, but I have a German Shepherd/Golden Retriever rescue doggie who is a good running buddy.  He is a bit slow for me, but he easily does shorter distances at a fairly decent pace (around 9:30).  He is very well behaved on the leash and doesn't stop to smell everything, but that comes from training him well early on.

               

              My buddy and the trophy we won running as dog and owner in a race (to raise money for a diabetic detection dog for a young boy)...and my other doggie in the background!):

               

              nel

              Mile 5:49 - 5K 19:58 - 10K 43:06 - HM 1:36:54

              NHLA


                I have an Italian Greyhound and he is a great running partner. He will run at any pace till you have had enough, The only problem is they don't like cold weather. Bird dogs are great runners but are not the best pets except English setters.

                bounce76


                  I have two labradors, and as you said in your first thread,  temperament is a factor. Our "slow" black labrador is the perfect running partner for me (I'm also slow!).  I only take him on runs that are 3-4 miles, as he is 18 months, so hasn't been running with me very long. Our yellow labrador has a lot more energy, and a bit too distracted for me to run easily with. I'm hoping that she might be a better running partner when she is a bit older.

                   

                  Labradors are bird dogs (my husband is a hunter) and my biased opinion is that they are great all-round dogs.  They are fantastic with my children aged 6 & 8. They are lay at my feet right now, where they have been all evening, so no excess energy in our dogs! They do get 2 good walks a day, morning and late afternoon, with my husband.

                  Upcoming Races:

                  AC Marathon: 10/13

                   

                  Honeybadgerruns.com

                    My advice would be to select a dog as a family member first and a runner second.  It must fit in with your family, and your main area of consideration should be on its temperment, size, kid-friendliness, energy/exercise demands, compatibility with your residential situation, and so on in that regard.

                     

                    A lot of breeds have the capacity to run, assuming you're not talking about extremes of distance, speed, or conditions.  FWIW, I've had two Rhodesians (purebred rescues, met the breeder) and a Catahoula Leopard mix (shelter rescue throughPetfinder).  The RR and CLD were/are both terrific running companions, on and off-leash.  But that's more because they had/have the physical attributes that accommodated running, and they were/are reasonably well-trained (as family members, not just for running).  I've seen folks run with Labs and other retrievers as well as random dogs like Corgis and smaller mutt-looking dogs.  A friend has a Jack Russell mix that's gone up to 10mi with him, no problem.

                     

                    And definitely do the training course!  It's a great way to bond with your dog, help him assimilate into the family, and establish roles.  Teaches kids patience and gives them some insight into parenting, too!

                    “Everything you need is already inside.” -- Bill Bowerman

                    GinnyinPA


                      Labs can surprise you.  The best long distance hiking dogs I ever met were a couple of labs who hiked 20+ miles a day, with packs.  One of them had hiked both the Pacific Crest Trail and the Appalachian Trail.  She could climb rocks like a mountain goat. I've met other labs doing long trails.  So yes, they can handle the endurance aspect pretty well, if trained to it.


                      dog person

                        As mentioned above petfinder.org is a great way to look for a potential best friend.  You can customize your search by breed, size, gender, location.

                         

                        Don't be afraid to get a shelter dog, a lot of good dogs, even the well bred ones end up in shelters. And it's the right thing to do.

                         

                         

                        Kristian


                        sugnim

                          I guess it depends on what you are looking for.  Our dog is a mutt from the pound.  What makes her a great running companion is her loyalty.  She wouldn't leave my side for anything, and she is very sweet & obedient.  She also has a large rib cage which I believe indicates a good lung capacity & strong heart.  When we got her, we first had to teach her how to walk on a leash properly & assert ourselves as pack leaders.  We then used the run/walk method to get her used to running.  Yesterday, she did 2.5 hours of mountain running in the snow with a group of people that were new to her & she did very well.

                           

                          Our last dog was a super champion runner, but he had no loyalty.  He would run away whenever he could.  But he could run fast and go forever.  After our long runs together, he'd be ready for more.  Ideally, he would have been the best running companion a person could hope for.  But his lack of loyalty meant he always had to be watched & redirected, & could never be trusted.  I think some of that was probably because we did not train him properly.

                            My dog is a good running companion when he's off the leash like when I take him to the woods. On the leash he's a pain in the ass so I don't generally run with him--too much energy and too spastic.

                             

                            I don't really know what breed he is (he's a rescue) but I suspect he's got some herding dog like border collie or Australian shepherd. Dude's got a shit ton of energy. We have an invisible fence so he can be outside running around the yard all the time but that doesn't let him socialize with other dogs. Fortunately our town forest is basically a dog's paradise. Everyone takes there dogs there to walk/run off leash and he can run around and play with is friends, sniff around in the woods for animals, chase ducks and generally be a dog. If I don't take him there once or twice a week for an hour or two of off-leash play time, he goes bonkers.

                             

                            When I run with him off leash he doesn't stay right next to me but he never gets more than about 50 yards from me. He winds up running probably 3x as far as I do has he zig-zags all over the place. When he falls in and actually starts running next to me, I know he's had enough and he's ready to go home.

                            Runners run.

                            FatSweatyBullDog


                              Herding dogs also make great running companions.  They are obedient, smart and can run all day.

                              I have a lab/cattle dog/who knows mix and she is a great running buddy.  She stays right with me and has plenty of energy.

                              I have taken her as far as 13 miles and she is a little tired after.  But when I take her 8 or less she will come home and chase our beagle around the house until the beagle is totally worn out.

                              As soon as I start putting on my running gear the dog goes nuts.

                              One piece of advice I would give is to make sure the dogs nails are kept short.

                                I agree that herding dogs can be good running partners--I've got two miniature Australian shepherds (14 lb & 18 lb) who I rescued a couple years ago and they run with me all the time.  I always carry water for them anytime we're doing more than a few miles (or plan runs past parks that have doggie water fountains) and I don't take them on longer runs when it's warm out.  If they don't get enough runs in during the week they get very crazy!