Trail Dawgs

There are a few of them around. Trail dogs so cool that they have their own Instagram accounts. Running with a loyal pooch has become a popular weekend activity for many South Africans. Let’s face it, there is nothing much that beats the sight of an athletic dog in full flight out on the trails. It just looks like freedom, with fur on it.

But there is more to it than just taking your dog from his daily park walk to the trails. As Trail Runner Magazine outlined in a recent article on the topic it is vital to consider that dogs easily overheat, become fatigued and run too far for their own good. Our best friends will push themselves in an effort to please us!

Consider the breed of your dog when deciding on their trail running suitability. Herding dogs such as collies cope well with more mileage. Young dogs shouldn’t run much distance until over the age of 15 months, and dogs with compressed noses or snoring issues often indicate an inability to breathe effectively on the trails.

Rei Co Op outlines some of gear and relevant etiquette required for running trails with dogs. Such as, skip the ear buds and stay in tune with their breathing and other indicators that they could be tiring.

In short, do the homework and build their endurance up slowly, as you would when training the human variety of trail runner.

Hounds and friends of hounds worth following on Instagram:

@rubythetraildog

@badgerthebullterrier

@poochy_coo

@Traildogjude