If you’re a dog lover looking to lose a few pounds, or a running enthusiast who has been giving too many treats to your canine mate, consider taking them along for a run.
While it might seem obvious that running can be beneficial for dogs as well as humans, you might not realise just how many calories can be burned depending on the breed.
Leading the way in athletic ability, according to recent research by Lovejoys Petfood – which has been converted into an awesome graph you can visit here https://www.lovejoyspetfood.co.uk/best-dogs-to-run-with/) – is (unsurprisingly) the Siberian Husky, able to complete a solid 10 miles and allowing you to burn a whopping 1,200 calories. If you get yourself a Rhodesian Ridgeback, you’ll be able to burn the same amount in just nine miles. Slightly behind but still impressive is the German Shepherd and the Dalmation, letting you burn around 1,000 calories in roughly eight miles.
Using this handy graph, you can quickly find out how effective running with your particular breed of dog can be.
Towards the bottom end of the spectrum, you’ll find the Whippet and Staffy Bull Terrier, with 250/350 calories for two miles; perfect for those of us with a short run attention-span. However, if you’re looking for a suitable four-legged running partner, don’t even glance at a Greyhound; these guys may have a fast rep, but will only pull in 180 calories for one mile.
You might be wondering why any of these stats even matter: just how beneficial can running be for the dog anyway? Very, it would seem. Under-stimulated pups can become hyper and destructive, but running helps them burn away that nervous energy to become calm, and easily trained. It allows them to bond with you as their owner – they’ll appreciate the person taking them out – and will also allow them to bond with other dogs in the family; running together requires cooperation and a little team effort. And the benefits for you, are plentiful.
If you decide to take up running with your dog, keep a few things in mind. Hydration is key for both of you, so take plenty of water and stop a few times for a breather and a drink. Also, remember to ease them into a decent running routine; us humans can’t instantly run 10 miles, and neither will your Husky. Finally, avoid stifling hot temperatures and hard concrete terrain. Instead, go off-roading in decent weather to make sure they don’t overheat or injure themselves.