Is It OK to Run With a Golden Retriever? (Quick Facts)

Is It OK to Run With a Golden Retriever

About a century and a half ago in Scotland, the first Golden Retriever was bred. They were developed as crossbreeds between the Yellow Flat-Coated Retrievers and the now extinct Tweed Water Spaniel. They then became massively popular in the 1920s when they were introduced to North America. The American Kennel Club registered them as a breed in 1925.

Golden Retrievers are fast, resilient runners. They are actually among the best dog breeds for fast, long-distance running. This means, given the chance, they can make perfect running companions and even encourage you to adopt a much healthier lifestyle.

Golden Retrievers are friendly, kind, confident, intelligent, and trustworthy, all the qualities you want in great companions. They are also affectionate and easy to train, making them perfect family pets.

If you have an active lifestyle, or if you find the wild outdoors absolutely intriguing, a Golden Retriever might be the perfect furry companion to take with you on your adventures. Here is a closer look at this beautiful dog breed.

How Fast Can a Golden Retriever Run? Compare with a Husky, German Shepherd, Labradors, Alaskan Malamute

A Golden Retriever is a fast runner and is among the best breeds of dogs that can run fast and for long distances. Here is a look at how it compares with the Husky, German Shepherd, Labrador, and Alaskan malamute:

Dog BreedMiles Per Hour
Golden Retriever35
German Shepherd30
Alaskan Malamute5.3

How Long Can a Golden Retriever Run?

Golden Retrievers were bred to hunt, so they can run for long distances. They can even run a marathon with you if you train them well. A Golden Retriever has average speed of 20-30mph but can also run up to 35mph with proper training.

A Golden Retriever is a running dog due to its high stamina and muscular body. They, however, do not run for long distances all at once. Their build allows them to run fast, but in short sprints, then stop before picking the race again.

Is it OK to Run with a Golden Retriever?

If you are thinking about running with your Golden Retriever, you need to consider its age first. Younger dogs cannot go for long distances as they have not built up their stamina yet. An adult retriever can, however, be a perfect running companion.

Be mindful of the distance you cover as the dog’s build is not meant to run long intervals for a long time. You can check with your vet if your dog has the paw and bone strength to keep up with you. Overdoing it can lead to hip dysplasia, which can occur if your dog extends running intervals before its appropriate running time.

Can Dogs Run Long Distances?

All dogs can run, but not all can endure long distances. Some breeds are, however, bred to withstand rigorous exercises and harsh weather, and can run those long distances. Golden Retrievers, German shepherds, Labrador retrievers, vizslas, some mixed breeds, and Australian shepherds are some of the dogs that can be long-distance running companions.

How far these dogs can run also depends on the training you give them. Just as you cannot wake up one day without training and run a marathon, so do the dogs need to be prepped before running long distances. With the right exercise regime, health, and terrain, they can go for many miles per hour. Checking with your veterinary also helps if you are not sure if your dog can run long distances.

Young dogs may have growth plates that are still growing, and taking them for a long-distance can harm them. Similarly, a dog that is too old cannot endure long runs.

Breeds with short noses such as Boxers, Pugs, Bulldogs, Chihuahua, among others, cannot run long distances. Due to their short noses, they often have respiratory issues when they run for long.

How Often Should I Walk My Golden Retriever?

Some factors come to play when you want to walk your Golden Retriever. One of them is the age: a young retriever less than a year old may do with 10-30 minutes of walking. Retrievers older than a year are more energetic and can go for longer walks: you can take them for a 30-minute brisk walk twice a day. Old dogs past ten years may not need vigorous exercises.

The health of the dog also matters. Older dogs tend to be more affected and therefore, cannot withstand long walks.

Since retrievers have a voracious appetite, it is good to ensure they exercise each day as opposed to keeping them locked up and only taking them out when you are free for walks.

When Should I Start Running with My Golden Retriever?

Before you start taking your retriever on walks, take the time to train him. Training should begin as early as two months. When your puppy is a few weeks old, he absorbs information faster than at an older age. Plus, when you start early, you also instill in yourself the self-discipline you need to build a much more rewarding relationship with your dog.

If you want to make him your running mate start preparing the morning or evening routine with him. Start going for 5-10 minutes, brisk walks. You can start in your house where they are fewer distractions and move out when he can keep up the steps with you.

Starting training early helps you bond with your puppy, and when he is older, he will be a better running companion. It also enables you to avoid the frustration of training an old dog new tricks.

You can graduate to running for long distances when your retriever reaches one year.

Is My Dog Too Old to Run?

Just like humans, dogs lose their stamina with age advancement. They may also develop age-related conditions such as arthritis that can make running sessions painful for them. Respiratory and heart diseases may also affect your old dog, making him an unsuitable running companion.

Dogs over ten years of age are more likely to be affected by age-related issues, and their energy levels are also lower. Regular visits to your dog’s veterinary will help determine if he can still withstand the pressure of those runs and jogs.

How Much Exercise Does a Golden Retriever Puppy Need?

The skeleton of a Golden Retriever pup is still not well-formed until the age of 1-2 years. Exercise is essential, but you should be careful not to go overboard as it can lead to injuries and deformities of the bones. As you start exercising him, focus on exercise that draws his attention and helps improve concentration.

A great exercise strategy for a puppy is the five-minute rule. This rule states that a puppy should exercise for five minutes for each month of its age. So if it is a two-month old, the puppy should exercise for 10 minutes, and if it is a four month old, it will need 20 minutes of exercise.

The rule applies until the puppy is a year old, where he can start exercising for more than an hour. You can exercise by playing fetch or walking briskly with him on a leash. Just be sure to limit the exercise sessions since they are playful, and they might overdo it and hurt themselves.

You may still need to see a vet before involving your puppy in vigorous exercises. The vet can check if the growth plates of the puppy have closed before allowing you to start running with him. If they have closed, it will be safe to go out on those brisk morning walks and runs.

How Much Exercise Does My Golden Retriever Need?

Golden Retrievers were initially hunting dogs, and that meant hiking mountains, swimming, and running for long hours before catching their prey. The genetic traits have not changed years later, and as pets, they still need daily exercise to prevent hyperactivity.

The amount of exercise also depends on the age of the retriever. A young one needs exercising, but not as rigorous as the adult one as it has not fully developed. An old one also needs working out to function well and avoid weight-related diseases.

They have a huge appetite, which if not coupled with exercise, can lead to obesity. Obesity can then lead to joint problems, diabetes, and heart problems. At least an hour a day is appropriate for your dog to be healthy and composed. Failure to exercise will lead him to destructive behaviors such as nagging barking, escaping, and chewing on things.

Daily walks will help exercise your retriever, stimulate his mind, and release excess energy. An adult retriever can exercise for long hours as their physique supports vigorous exercises. The time spent out depends on you, but you can do 45 minutes to an hour daily instead of long hours during the weekend only.

Tips Before You Start Running with Your Dog

A dog will not disappoint as a running partner. It will not call in late or refuse to show up on the agreed morning run. For such loyalty, you need your dog in perfect health, comfortable, and safe to start the race with you. These tips will help you start running with your dog and have a fun time while at it.

Start Training Slowly

Take out your dog on short distances and at a slower pace during the run. Gradually increase the speed and the distance to harden pads to avoid injuries. You can also check your pet’s pads to see if they got hurt and if there are spots, bleeding, and tenderness, give him a break.

Consult Your Vet

Before you start with training, consult with your vet when will be the appropriate time to get started. A vet will tell if your breed can withstand the running sessions. You will also know if the dog is in the proper age to run and the distance he can endure. Older dogs from ten years and above or younger ones less than a year old will not be ideal for them to run.

Leash Your Dog

Your dog may be friendly, but it might scare other runners on your way. He may also try to run towards other dogs on the road. It will be appropriate to leash your dog to avoid all these inconveniences.

Run on Trails

Running on the sidewalks or the road can harm your dog’s joints. For the safety of the joints, run on soft trails.


Just as your body needs water during running, so does your dog. As you go out with him, remember to carry water for the two of you. Take water before, during, and after the running session.

Observe Your Dog

Overheating due to running can lead to heat-related illnesses. Fatigue can also affect your dog. You can check for signs such as slowing down, panting, foam from the mouth, weakness, agitation, among other signs. If you see any of the symptoms, take the dog under a shade, and pour cold water on him. See a vet if the symptoms worsen and if he starts vomiting.

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