Keep hydrated! There will be water stops at the start, finish and on the route. It’s important that your dog drinks small amounts regularly – it’s not good for your dog to gulp large volumes of water while exercising so it’s better to allow him or her to drink a small amount and then come back for some more later. Consider when you plan to eat in advance of the Dog Jog, you and your dog will feel more comfortable if you aren’t exercising on a full stomach.
We anticipate that you will perhaps want to walk a bit, jog a bit and for those pooches who are demanding, maybe even carrying for a bit – this is fine, take as long as you like! However, if you plan to run with your dog then remember to run at a pace that you and your dog are comfortable with. Also, keep in mind that running on tarmac can be quite stressful for your dog’s joints and paws so please remember that we are in beautiful parks, and that you can run on the grass rather than a path whenever you like.
If you do plan to run, consider using an appropriate harness on your dog to ensure that their breathing is not restricted during vigorous exercise and so that they are comfortable and safe when they are running. There will be a staggered start so if you plan to run rather than jog, please position yourself at the front of the Jog section. There will then be a walk & jog section and finally a walk section. Wherever you are in the start area try to give your dog and others as much space as possible. Remember your dog will be even more excited than you to start so try to keep them calm and if you know your dog gets over excited around other dogs consider starting at the back where you will find more space.
If you are treating a friend’s dog to a day out at Dog Jog remember to ask the owner how their dog usually acts among other dogs, or even take the dog for a walk or two in the lead up to the event so you know you are comfortable in each others company, and that of other dogs.
We are used to traditional British weather, however if the sun does shine and temperatures are higher than normal then please act accordingly to prevent your dog suffering from overheating, for example you might want to splash your dog with cool water whenever you get a chance. Short-nosed dogs in particular are more likely to overheat through exercise so consider your individual dog. On hot days it will be better to keep your dog on grass as tarmac pathways may burn their paws. In cases of very hot weather it may be best for you to jog solo and take home a Doggy Bag for your pooch, then you can go out to exercise your dog when the temperature drops.
For advice on best practice when running with your dog, the very helpful people at Cani-Sports Edinburgh have produced a guidance video which you can watch here. If you have any advice which you would like to add to this page, please contact us, we’d love to hear from you!