Owning a Corgi is a fun and rewarding experience. This breed is an energetic and playful dog, bringing miniature, furry joy into any life it frolicks into. However, despite their energy and need for activity, there are certain things you should not let your Corgi do. Besides the no chocolate rule that is engrained into every dog owner’s mind, you should keep certain restrictions in mind for your Corgi.
In short, taking your Corgi for a long distance run is not a good idea. One thing a Corgi should not do is engage in endurance or long distance activities. The Corgi’s physical make up, short legs and a long back, and their temperament, a knack for variation and stimulating activity, do not lend well to extended periods of repetitive exercise.
To gain a better understanding of your Corgi’s physical limitations and alternatives that are better suited for your canine companion, read on. We will cover everything you need to know, from the specifics of why they cannot run long distances to ideas for activities that will stimulate your Corgi more. Let’s get started!
Corgis’ Running History
Going back to the very beginning of this adorable breed’s history, we see that a Celt tribe started domesticating the Cardigan Welsh Corgi more than 3,000 years ago. Over history, the Corgi remained a stalwart of Welsh society.
In the 10th century, the Welsh started widely using the Corgi as a cowherd dog. The corgi lent itself well to this job. Examining what this job entails can also give us a good idea of how the Corgi’s running habits developed.
Herding cows provided the corgi with a stimulating task that seldom proved repetitive; hence the Corgis need for constant novel stimulation. Herding also gave the Corgi the chance to sprint short distances, putting their physical makeup to apt use. Not much has changed since then. The short legs and long back of the Corgi is more suited for shorter sprints rather than long runs.
How Fast Can Corgis Run?
What surprises many people about Corgis is their ability to run quite fast. Corgis have been recorded as running as fast as 25 mph at top speed. Although the short legs and long back of the Corgi do not do well with long distance running, this physical makeup does not slow them down at all during sprints.
A big reason for their speed is the Corgi’s use of their core rather than their legs while running. Let this be a furry and adorable inspiration for you to pump out those crunches every day!
How Long Can a Corgi Run at One Time?
The farthest you should push your Corgi to run at one time is between one and two miles. Two miles may be pushing, especially as your Corgi gets older.
Running for too far can cause back and joint problems in your Corgi as they age. The distance they can run depends on their fitness level, of course. However, Corgis are more suited to short distance sprints and agility based activities.
The Corgi’s endurance, like any athlete, depends on their fitness level. If your Corgi is new to exercise, start them off at a moderate level and work their way higher. You will have to closely monitor their progress since your Corgi will be very willing to obey any command, even if it is at the cost of physical harm to them.
That being said, though, you should not push your Corgi to run a distance greater than 2 miles. Corgis, having been bred as cow and sheep herding dogs, are more suited to sprinting and agility activities. To use athletes as an example, Corgis would be more of a basketball player or NFL running back rather than a marathon runner.
Not the Body Type for Long Distance Running
The Corgi possesses rather short legs and a longer trunk. Their gait is close to the ground and uses more of their body and core than their legs. This makes the Corgi a surprisingly efficient and fast sprinter.
However, if used in this manner to run longer distances, the Corgi’s body would tire quickly and experience back and joint problems. Imagine trying to run a marathon on legs that have to support a torso five times longer than they are.
Should You Run Long Distances with Your Corgi
In short, no, you should not run long distances with your Corgi. They are more suited to either long walks, they can go for seven or eight miles if in good enough shape, or sprint or agility based activities.
Corgis, being very obedient, are great dogs for learning tricks. However, teach them with caution. Their energy and willingness to obey leads them to attempt tricks that can be harmful to them.
Brisk walks in varying locations to keep your Corgi’s attention, obstacle courses, and a very fast-paced game of fetch are activities more suitable to give your Corgi the exercise and entertainment it needs.
Is It Possible to Turn My Corgi into a Long-Distance Runner?
This question can be a bit misleading. Although it is possible to get your Corgi into good enough shape to run as much as two miles or more, it is not a good idea to do so.
As stated before, running long distances can cause back and joint problems in your Corgi. These can get worse with age or increased long distance running. If you want to engage in long distance activities with your Corgi, try brisk walks of up to 6 or 8 miles.
To give your Corgi the exercise it needs, engage it in more sprint and agility based activities.
Health Problems Associated with Running Long Distances
As Corgis run longer and longer distances, their short-legged and long-backed bodies experience stress it is not equipped for. To start off, Corgis are prone to health problems such as hip dysplasia and back problems.
Straining their bodies in ways they were not built for will only exacerbate these injuries. Back, joint, and muscle injuries can all result from your Corgi running too far or too long.
Keeping Your Corgi Safe on the Run
To keep your Corgi safe on runs, limit them to less than two miles. Even if they are in great shape and seem willing to run longer and farther, do not let your Corgi push themselves. You know their limitations better than they do many times. Their energy and enthusiasm can get the better of them.
Make sure that the terrain you are running on is flat and even. Corgis have been known to injure their joints and hips from jumping off of high surfaces such as furniture and stairs. Throw in the unpredictability of nature and you could easily meet with disaster.
Finally, if you feel like the run is getting to be too much for your Corgi, stop right away and turn it into a walk. Even slowing it down to a brisk walk from a slow jog can do wonders to protect your Corgi’s health and increase the distance they can go.
What to Bring on Your Long Run?
If you decide that your Corgi is ready for a long run (remember, no more than two miles) and you are ready to face the risks if they happen, you should take some things with you just to be safe.
Water is a great thing to have, both for you and your Corgi. A leash is a useful way to rein your Corgi in when they are being pushed too hard.
Especially as your Corgi ages and back and joint problems become more of a risk, it is a good idea to bring a stroller with you on your runs. At the risk of being that dog owner pushing their pet around in a stroller, using one can allow you to go for long runs and still enjoy the company of your Corgi while giving it some fresh air and scenery.
Of course, the best thing to bring with you on that long run is a good idea of your Corgi’s limitations and a sense of awareness for any dangers or problems that may happen. Stay smart and stay safe.