Should you go running with a Scottish Terrier?

Jock, originally uploaded by Magic_moments.


A reader writes:

I have a 2 year old scottie, and he and I recently have become jogging partners. I’m pretty slow, so he’s able to keep up. We take rests and water breaks when he needs to, but I was wondering if you or your readers had any knowledge or experience about whether or not this would be bad for him in the long run. I know some dogs just weren’t built for running/jogging, so I want to make sure I’m not accidently hurting him. 

Thanks so much!

The Scottish Terrier and Dog News used to oppose running with dogs. My feeling was that while dogs love to run, they don’t necessarily want to follow a human fitness regime. The Dog Whisperer changed my mind — or at least for some breeds.

I still don’t see scotties as distance runners, but there’s no doubt that they can sprint. On the rare occasions that I take Bridget for a jog, I tie her up at the local track while I keep an eye on her as I put in my two miles.

As I’ve never wanted to draft her as my running partner, I’ve never asked the vet about it. I do, however, have a friend who does triathlons and marathons and got a Weimeraner puppy last year. Her vet advised her not to run with the dog until it reched a certain age so there are definitely restrictions on these things and you need a professional opinion.

Has anyone out there had this discussion with the vet?

, originally uploaded by striqun.


9 thoughts on “Should you go running with a Scottish Terrier?

  1. My vet told me to be conscious of how short our Scotties' legs are and that they're so compact that they're not really built for long distances, but as you say, they're great on a sprint.

    While Rory & Fiona love to walk at a very brisk pace, they seem to lag quickly if you attempt to make them run. So, we let them walk as fast as they wish and then walk them slower toward the end to 'cool down'. While I'm not certain that it would harm a dog per se to job with its owner, I think you'll find in the long run, your job will be much smoother if done on your own! Happy trails to you and your Scottie!

  2. I don't know about the jogging running thing, but the local vet that has an agility training course won't take them until they are 1 year old. He says all that jumping is not good for their joints until they have matured. Bonnie can walk very fast for 3 miles, pulling all the way, and still be pulling when we get home, wanting to go faster than I walk. And I walk at a faster than normal clip. I think she'd benefit from some Cesar Milan roller blading myself.

  3. Lucky you being able to jog with your scottie. I can barely call what I do with Macintosh a walk. It's more of a 2 mile stop 'n sniff until he sees another dog, in which case it's me chasing after Usain Bolt.

    I do think brisk walking is far better for them than jogging.

    1. My Scottie has never liked to walk much. When I take her around the block, eventually she plonks herself down and won’t go further. Sometimes have to carry her.

  4. I'm with 'Anonymous', my Kirk is a 'stop an sniff' as opposed to a walker. However, I consider her walks a social thing, her way of interacting with local dogs and leaving her mark… which is natural dog thing.

    I'd say please let her occasionally stop, sniff, leave her mark as well as jog with you.

    Mind you, not every dog is the same and he probably loves running, so just treat your Scotty as an individual and if worried, keep up the vet visits.

    Please look out for Scotty arthritis and give her cod liver oil or suppliments in her diet…and again ask HIS vet not us.


  5. Our Piper is also a "stop and sniffer", except when one of her friends is around, then it is "Warpfactor 5, Mr. Sulu", and damn the trilithium crystals…

    Agility is also one of her favourite activities, at the moment we only do it for fun, but I'm really considering entering a few competitions as she is so good at it.

  6. Have a look a Canix – allsorts of dogs compete in that and love it. My husband runs with our Scottie (who is 3 and fit as a fiddle) and our Border Terrier – they both love to run with him and have had no health/body issues at all.

Comments are closed.