The past couple weeks I’ve been running with Jade The Boxer more. When we decided to get a dog, my hubby really wanted me to have a dog that could run with me for extra protection. I kind of thought that sounded nice, but I also thought it sounded a little like an annoyance. I figured I would be slowed down or dragged along by a pet that doesn’t have a pace that matches mine.
And then when we got Jade and she was a royal pain in the arse on the leash. I thought I maybe wouldn’t get to run with her ever. She planted her butt and refused to walk with me. She pulled and pulled so hard her neck was red and raw. She pooped and peed frequently.
(Yeah, her sidewalk bowel movements are one of the reasons I would never be a completely barefoot runner. I’ve seen what she’s done and we don’t usually have a ton of rain here in Vegas to wash that kind of stuff away quickly. Don’t worry, I do pick it up. But she has a finicky gut and her early months were very… soft. We’ll leave it at that.)
I do take her out to the open desert and let her run off-leash. I thoroughly enjoy those mornings. But it’s very different then if she were to run continuously. I run along while she pauses to sniff something, then charges ahead to be next to me. Then she wanders away, followed up with a quick sprint to me again. The longer we run the closer she sticks to me. (She’s a chicken-dog, frightened by lots of things!)
Since I have started working on coming back to running after my injury I’ve been taking Jade with me on runs around the neighborhood. We have been doing 3.5 miles a few times a week. The first time she fought me for about the first .1 mile and then she fell in line next to me. And now she gets really excited when she sees me pull her running leash from the basket.
I love the whole experience. It doesn’t feel like hard work or like I’m forcing a workout or anything like that, I’m just playing with my doggie! I do talk to her a lot on the run, things like, “Ah ah… no pull.” and “Good girl!” and “Did that scare you? It’s okay!” She does a lot better early in the morning too, when there is less traffic whizzing by on the roads. She’s veered right into my legs a few times when she’s been scared by loud passing vehicles. (Yep, I almost fell just yesterday! We recovered before meeting the ground!)
I bought the Roamer leash from Ruffwear to have a hands-free experience while running. She’s not quite ready to be trusted without my hanging on though, but I don’t have to keep as firm of a grip on her and this leash has a convenient spot for me to hold onto so she is on a pretty short leash to stick right by my side. It also has a stretchy part on it, so if I do let go and she lunges, it deflects some of that shock and I’m not yanked around.
And after a good run, this is what Jade looks like:
She usually finds an out-of-the-way spot and hunkers down for a solid nap. It’s a solution for her boundless energy!
Now if only I could get her to carry her own poop back with her!
I have often seen dogs where the owner makes them carry their own poop bags, but yeah making her carry her own poop might be kinda cruel… She is still as adorable as ever, Jill.
I had a friend that hooked her dog’s poop bag to it’s collar, along with a shovel she used to pick up the mess. That just seemed mean to me!
Ok, she is SO cute!!!! I am so glad the running is working out. So fun!
Thank you! I’m happy the running is working out too… it’s good for both of us!
OMG, she’s so darn cute. I’m glad it’s working out for you – I wish I could run with my pups!
Biggie and Diddy probably aren’t the best runners, but they’re plenty entertaining anyway!
Wonderful piece. Glad you have this wonderful dog in your life. I love the exhausted look.
I have a half Italian-grayhound half chihuahua. He’s a sprinter. On a 3 mile run, he feigns injury about mile 2 then forgets and starts running again.
That’s funny, the pup feigning injury! Dogs have such great personalities!
I run with my German Shorthaired Pointer, Rosemary. We had beagles before–not runners. But when they died, my husband wanted a GSP so she could run with us. More often than not she runs with me because I run a lot on paved trails and there is nothing like having a dog along. We now have a “get ready to run” routine. We put on her collar with her tags, start the Garmin and then let her outside. 99% of the time she goes poop and therefore there is no pooping on the run. It is awesome! She has run up to 11 miles at one time and last week she ran a total of 33 miles with me. Running is her job and she loves it! I love reading about dogs that run with their owners as it is so positive for both. Have fun and give Jade a scratch from me…
I usually try to let Jade run around the yard so she can take care of business… but it seems like about 2 miles of running seems to knock a little more loose each time! 🙂
I love that your dog has run up to 11 miles with you, that would be awesome if Jade could do that one day!
Jade is so adorable!!! I would love to have a dog since I could take it running or walking.
I have cats and although I love them, they aren’t as active. 🙂
That would be hilarious if someone was running with a cat! I highly recommend dogs… I was scared of dogs as a kid too, and now I’m a total dog nut! At least, a total Jade nut!
i love that leash! i’ve started running with my dog, too, and he has a lot of the same doggy running mannerisms as jade 🙂 we use the mountain dog leash which is hands free (awesome) but doesn’t have a stretchy part for rebounding softly! i’m tempted to check out that ruffwear leash…