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Jogging, Hiking, and Swimming Safely with Your Dog

Behavior and Training  •   Ashley Shaffer  •   Apr 20, 2015

We all love our dogs. We call them “man’s best friend” for a reason, right? But do you ever wonder if you’re doing everything you can to keep your four legged fellow safe while you’re out and about? So many of us enjoy sharing an active lifestyle with our dogs. Your PetPartners family wants to make sure you have the information you need to do it safely.

Do you like to jog with your dog?

  • Always use a leash. Even the best behaved dogs give into their instincts every now and then and next to the road, where most of us jog, is not the place you want to have that happen. Play it safe and smart by keeping your pet on a leash.
  • Remember your pooches’ pads. They aren't wearing shoes and the surface of sidewalks and streets can be hot in the summer so you should walk in the morning or evening when the temperatures aren’t at their highest. In the winter streets and sidewalks can be cold and covered in de-icers that are toxic to animals. Wash and dry their feet to remove any residue.
  • Know what level of activity your dog is ready for. All breeds are different. Some are better equipped for long distance jogging while others are built for shorter distances.
  • Don’t forget, your dog needs to be conditioned just like you do. Gradually build up the distance you are hoping to cover with your dog, don’t just run out of the gate for a marathon.

Are you planning a hike with your four-legged fur baby?

  • Using a leash is always highly advised, even when hiking, but if you are interested in allowing Rover to roam free, first make sure the area allows off-leash dogs. You also want to make sure your dog responds quickly to your commands in the event he decides to take off after a newfound forest friend.
  • You never know what you might encounter when you’re out enjoying nature. Make sure your pet’s vaccines are up to date.
  • Make sure you bring enough fresh water for you AND your pooch. Don’t forget the bowl. They make a ton of travel friendly, collapsible water bowls for this very purpose. Cupping your hands together just doesn't work as well as you would hope… I know, because I've tried.

Does your dog love to make a splash?  

  • Just like kids, dogs should never swim unsupervised. 
  • Try to keep your water loving tail wagger from drinking the water. Water in pools often contains chemicals not meant for consumption. Lakes, ponds, and puddles can contain parasites and can make your dog sick. 
  • Always rinse your pup after a swim to remove any dirt, salt water or chemicals. 
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