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17 Paw-fect Dogs for Runners
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The following dogs are great for short- to mid-distance runs.
Jack Russell Terrier
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The Jack Russell Terrier is a tough, sturdy terrier that's very energetic. A quick 5K run is the perfect way to get this little guy some exercise. His short legs are strong enough for three miles, but you need to train him to work up to that distance. If you're looking for a shorter distance, faster breed, then this pup is for you.
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Just because the toy poodle is more known for beauty and pamper, doesn't mean this breed is lazy. This pooch is pretty quick and doesn't get the credit it deserves. Poodles were originally bred to retrieve, meaning they're active and energetic. A quick, short run will help burn the energy and give you a great tempo running bud.
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Scooter, Photo by Leo Zaza
This happy little dog loves to be by its owner's side, which makes them a great running companion. The Tenterfield Terrier is an active and agile working terrier. This breed is very intelligent, bright, happy and eager to learn. Bred as a working dog, this dog has energy to burn, and at a fast pace. If you enjoy fast, short runs, bring this little guy along with you.
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The Shetland Sheepdog is essentially a smaller version of a working Collie. The Shelti is very obedient and excels in agility, herding and conformation, which make for a great running mate. If you want to go the distance, this little breed can hang, but not for miles. A short tempo run is perfect for this four-legged friend.
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The largest terrier of the Terrier family, the Airedale weighs about 60 pounds—no wonder it's called The King. Extremely smart, these bubbly and energetic dogs love to hunt, guard, and run, which is one reason they served for the military and White House. If you're looking for a canine to run fast-paced, shorter to medium distances, then this four-legged friend is right for you.
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A sporting and family dog, the Labrador thrives with an active family. The Labrador (Lab) is originally from Newfoundland where they worked alongside fisherman, pulling nets and catching escaped fished. Once crossed with settlers, the Labrador honed in on its natural retrieving skill. A very alert, smart breed, the lab is perfect for fast-paced short runs or slow and steady long runs.
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Whether you want a fast-paced, short-distance run mate or a slow and steady long running partner, the Golden is right up your alley. These are lovable, well-mannered, bright dogs that love to hunt, track, retrieve, fetch, or perform tricks. The Golden is very trainable and loves to be by their master's side. Just make sure you show leadership so Fido doesn't pull you on your runs.
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These dogs are excellent for your longer runs.
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The Australian Shepard, also known as the Aussie, is the ultimate working dog. Thought to originate from Europe, these dogs were made to herd sheep once in America. Exceptionally smart, the Aussie is also known for sport and agility competitions. They have incredible stamina and can run for long periods, which is why this canine companion makes a great running buddy.
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Want to set out for a 10-mile run? No problem. The Siberian Husky loves to run. Summer running might be a bit much for them because of their fur, so make sure you stop frequently to hydrate. But come wintertime, they are in their element. Not only is running a great form of exercise for them, but it also helps them release excessive energy. Make sure to wait for their bones to fully mature before you hit the pavement to help minimize joint issues down the road.
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The Alaskan Malamute is a very powerful, strong-willed and fun-loving dog. It's strong-boned and compact body is designed to haul heavy loads—hence they pull sleds or carts. Without adequate exercise, they can become destructive. It's very important that they get a sufficient amount of exercise every day, which is why they make great marathon-training partners. They are capable of going the distance.
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Many dog experts believe that the Border Collie is by far the smartest, most intelligent breed out there. They are one of the best breeds for herding and they are natural born athletes. Their body is built for speed, agility and stamina. Since they are so smart and energetic, you have to be a very stern owner...or they may destruct everything you own, which is why adequate exercise is so vital. They love to run, play, and chase animals. So snap on their leash and head out for a long run.
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Known as the military dog, the German Shepard is a very loving and loyal dog. But intruders beware; this breed is extremely protective of their family. Yes, the German Shepard is known to be a bit aggressive, but with lots of training, they are great dogs. This sturdy, muscular and solid bone-structure breed loves to work and play. Their strong body allows them go out on runs for miles at a time. Get them on the same marathon-training plan as you so they can perform their best.
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From South Africa, the Rhodesian Ridgeback was bred to farm and hunt because of their long and muscular build. Also known as an athletic dog, they have an incredible amount of stamina, but without physical exercise they can become unmanageable. They make great running companions.
Other Great Long-Distance Breeds
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Ibizan Hound Greyhounds Weimaraners Vizslas