Fancy taking on a running challenge with your pet pooch? We've got just the thing on Saturday 19 October 2019 at the Simplyhealth Great South Run - the Canine Run! Click here to find out more.

We know our nation loves pets and among the favourite are our furry four-legged running pals, dogs.  Let’s take a look at how running with your canine friends can be great, and what to consider before you lace-up your trainers and grab that dog lead.


There are so many reasons why running with your dog is great, here are just a few.

Your pacemaker

If you don’t have a regular running pal, your dog will never let you down and we’re pretty sure they’ll be glad to head out with you no matter the time, place or weather. And having a canine companion might help you get more out of your running, pushing you to move faster and farther! 

Ruff day? 

There has been plenty of research showing the benefits of physical exercise to your mental health. But did you know exercise is also important in keeping up the mental wellbeing of our furry friends? So not only will your next run help boost your mood, but it will also help your dog’s as well! 

Double the benefit

Running is of course not just good for our mental wellbeing, but our physical wellbeing too. Exercising goes hand in hand with good health, and running is a great way to get that exercise. Just like humans, dogs need daily exercise to stay in good health and keep those pounds off. So taking your dog for a run will be doubly beneficial, helping you and your four-legged friend stay fit and healthy. 

Pup and running 

When it comes to squeezing in a work out, sometimes it can be hard to stay motivated and stick to a proper routine! But add a dog to the mix and you may find yourself getting more exercise.  A study has shown that dog owners are more likely to exercise regularly! With a dog to motivate you to get out and run, or even just walk, you’ll be 34% more likely to reach that recommended 150 minutes of weekly exercise. 


Now that we’ve covered the great reasons to hit the road with your trusty pooch, here are some things to consider as you head out.

Paws for sniffs

Be aware that if you’re venturing out with your dog, they may like to investigate as they go. 
Running with them on the end of the lead can be a great way to keep up your speed, but be mindful of the stop-start habits when they pick up a scent.

Follow the leader 

While running with a lead means your dog won’t sprint off out of sight, it can also be a trip hazard.

So, take care when keeping your dog by your side and try to keep them on a short lead, not one that may end up with you wrapped around a tree! 

And remember if you’re feeling tired, they probably won't be, so a little pull on the lead will keep you going.

Best to check

While many dogs are happy with running, make sure you check whether your breed is OK to come along with you. And keep in mind that younger dogs are still growing and forming their joints, so are not as suited to prolonged exercise which may lead to health issues later in their lives! Check with your vet. 

Running in the dark 

If you’re out and about running in the dark , there are some great accessories you can buy for your dog that help with visibility, including flashing collars and even high vis coats.

You’re less likely to lose them, and other walkers or runners will be able to see them approaching.


We all need to stay hydrated when we exercise, and you can be certain that your dog will be extremely thirsty!  If it’s a warm day make sure you take along a bottle of water for your dog to refuel if you stop for a break. You can even get a collapsible water dish to make it even easier for them to get a drink.