Summer is right around the corner, and we know that you and your pup are probably itching to hit the trails and get dirt under your paws. After the long winter lull, it is easy to sprint out the door, leash in hand, and bite off more than you or your dog can chew, but keep these 3 tips in mind to keep you and your 4-legged running partner safe.
Summer Running Tips With Your Dog
1. Heel (Easy Does It)
Some of us have been cooped up indoors for too long. That first glimmer of sunshine can seem like the green light, but both you and your dog might need to ease into it. Try not to push too hard the first few days, start off slow, and build from there. Many running injuries, human and dog, comes from overdoing it or doing too much, too early. Keep an eye on your pup, their paws, and your legs. Once you are getting into a groove, start ramping up the miles.
2. Dirt > Road
This is not one of those utopian "dirt is better than pavement" posts; but when looking to your four-legged friend's paws, there's no doubt that dirt is better than road. Be aware of your dog's running surface, especially in the summer heat, because blacktop can easily burn the pads on their paws. The best rule of "paw" is that if the asphalt is hot to your bare feet, it will be hot to your dog's paws. On warm summer days, it is best to avoid road and look for grass or dirt paths.
3. Stay Cool
Overheating is a real risk to your four-legged friend. Dogs don't sweat like humans do, instead they release heat through panting and their paws. Make sure to bring plenty of water to keep your pet cool. If your dog starts panting more than normal, find a way to cool them down quickly to avoid heat stroke. Some breeds adapt to heat better than others, but it is important to pay close attention to your running partner as the summer heat kicks in.
Bonus: Bring Healthy Options for Fueling
Our dogs are our favorite running partners. They don't complain, they are never late, and rarely oversleep and miss a run (actually, they are typically up first, licking our face, asking when we get to hit the trail). To show appreciation for their unfettered support, we like to spoil them with Animo'. Order your four-legged friend and you to share!