Whether you’re a human or a dog, exercise is always a good thing.
But if you’re a runner, going solo can be a lonely affair. Lucky for us, there’s no one more excited to join you on a jog than your pup!
No matter your mileage or speed, there is a dog out there for the runner in you. Here are 15 breeds that are just waiting to hit the trails with you:
1. Jack Russell Terrier
Apartment dwellers or those with tiny backyards will find this sturdy little dog perfect for daily runs. The best mileage for this pup is something on the “shorter” side — 10 miles or fewer. (I put “shorter” in quotes cause honestly 10 sounds like a lot to me.)
2. Shetland Sheepdog
Highly intelligent, easily trained, and bred to herd, Shetland Sheepdogs will still appeal to those with smaller homes/apartments, or anyone preferring a medium-sized pup.
3. Airedale Terrier
The Airedale terrier’s wiry coat makes them a great dog for warmer climates. Many smaller dogs (and humans, if I’m speaking for me) struggle with the distances required for marathon training, so it’s best to keep the race under a 10K (6.2 miles) for this breed.
Beagles looooove being outside, making these energetic pups an ideal candidate for outdoor runners.
5. American Staffordshire Terrier
Highly intelligent and spirited, Staffordshire Terries can endure those early training runs sessions when you’re pumping out 7-10 miles, or when you’re doing a tempo run. Since they’re a very task-focused breed, the likelihood of you getting dragged off the sidewalk to chase birds and cats is minimal. (Though we make no promises.)
6. Labrador Retrievers
Ah, Labs. Energetic. Friendly. Willing to go the extra mile (literally). Labs seem pretty much up for anything, but they’re best-suited for the slow and steady runners out there.
7. Standard Poodle
Don’t let the “prim and proper” facade of the Standard Poodle fool you. These dogs were originally bred for hunting. Yeah, hunting! And much like the Lab, joggers who prefer a more measured, deliberate clip will enjoy having a fancy-looking Standard Poodle by their side.
If you’re a fast runner over shorter distances, a Boxer might be the perfect running partner for you. Not only do Boxers love to run, but they’re also well-known for their bursts of speed and ability to maintain a brisk pace.
9. Siberian Husky
If you are one of those brave/crazy souls who runs outdoors all year — even in the freezing cold — consider taking a Siberian Husky with you! These dogs boast high energy, a double coat that’s perfectly suited for winter, and lovable personalities that will almost make you forget that you’re awake at 6am to run in sub-freezing temps.
Before hitting the road during those long winter months, be sure to get your new running pal some booties to protect his/her precious paws!
10. Australian Shepherd
Naturally agile, Australian Shepherds are great trail runners, adept at navigating uneven surfaces and tricky terrain. Their medium build also makes them perfect for more narrow, windier paths.
11. Border Collie
Thought to be among the smartest dogs, this herding breed are natural runners. They love to be active and require a lot of exercise, so this is a running buddy best-suited for a human who doesn’t often work long hours.
12. German Shorthair Pointer
These active dogs love to get the lead out and require a lot of exercise on a daily basis, so they’re the perfect partner for long runs. A German Shorthaired Pointer can definitely help you reach the finish line for your marathon training. Or they can join you on race day — check out these dog-friendly marathons
Because of their short coats, Weimaraners are perfect for those humans living in warmer climates. Long runs or short sprints, this pup will be able to keep up with whatever your training goals are.
14. Rhodesian Ridgeback
The Rhodesian Ridgeback is the ideal running buddy for very active, athletic people. You might think you’re in good shape, but you’ll most likely poop out before the Ridgeback does. So take note, marathoners and long-distance runners: this pup can keep up.
While this isn’t a specific breed, a rescue could make a fantastic jogging buddy. Many of these dogs landed in shelters in the first place because their former owners could not meet their exercise needs. Be sure to check out your local animal shelters and rescue organizations. Your perfect running buddy could be right around the corner!
So no matter how tough your next run might be, just remember: a dog will always make it a lot more fun!
Featured image via Animal Planet