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How Many Miles Can German Shepherd Run?


I'm a distance runner and would like to recruit a German Shepherd to take out with me for a nice run. Even though most of the dogs love to run but not all dog breeds that able to run long distances. So I decided to research it to find out.

So, how many miles can a German Shepherd run? A German Shepherd with good shape of health and average age (one year or more) can safely run between 5 to 20 miles.

First of all, German Shepherd needs to build up to a more intense running program jus as any athlete would. The owner should begin by jogging shorter distances.

What makes a German Shepherd a natural athlete? It tends to relate their history, breeds, and temperament.

Table of Content

  1. German Shepherd History: A Natural Athlete
  2. How to get German Shepherd ready for running?
    • Basic Obedience Training
    • Teaching the Dog Heel Command
  3. How fast can a German Shepherd run?
  4. What exercises good for German Shepherds?
    • Hiking with German Shepherd
    • Bicycle with a German Shepherd
    • Swimming with a German Shepherd
    • Agility Training (Throw & Fetch Game)

The German Shepherd History: A Natural Athlete

The German Shepherd originated from Germany and play as a herding dog to protect and herd sheep making it a highly athletic dog that thrives on having a job and exercise.

It is a medium-large dog breed that can do almost anything: police work, search and rescue, therapy, protection, and family pet. The German Shepherd is an intelligent, loyal dog that takes well to obedience training and is eager to please.

Therefore, the German Shepherd requires an hour and a half to two hours of heavy exercise daily. If this is not met the dog can become destructive.

How to get German Shepherd ready for running?

German Shepherd needs to build up to a more intense running program just as any athlete would. The owner should begin by jogging shorter distances. Especially, if beginning this training with a dog when he or she is a puppy. The owner will need to work on obedience training including dog heeling.

Basic Obedience Training

This type of training goes beyond sit. The first and one of the most important commands you will want to teach is the come or recall command.

First and foremost, you want to teach your dog what it means to come. The dog's owner should use either treats or an object (such as a ball or toy) and catch the dog's attention. Once the dog starts coming over to investigate. the owner can use the command, “Come!” You should only use the verbal cue.

When your dog is coming towards you. After a few sessions of using the trigger object. you can use the “come” cue before pulling out the object.

Next, you can teach your dog a recall game. An owner does this by walking their dog on a leash then turning around a few steps. The dog will move with you and you can use the verbal cue of “come” and reward him or her with either a toy or treat.

Here are some Brain Training Program for your dogs when it still a puppy or adult age (more than 1 year). The training method is using a science-based approach, force-free training to train pets.

Teaching the Dog Heel Command

Many prefer to teach their dog to heel with the leash. However, for the owner that wants their German Shepherd to hike. bike, or jog off-leash. Then teaching this command without the leash is more practical.

As usual, be sure to have plenty of treats, and the clicker ready beforehand. The owner begins by having the dog sit on his or her left side. The dog owner holds a handful of treats in a close to the dog's nose and states the command. “heel.” The owner then begins to walk. For the first try. take only two or three steps before treating the dog. It will take multiple attempts to get the dog moving consistently.

After the dog begins to move more consistently with the owner, he or she needs to begin to cut down on the number of treats and try using either the clicker or verbal praise. Begin by having the dog sit on your left side and state the command, “Heel.”

Be sure to treat your dog after starting the command. Distractions can begin to be added such as other people, dogs, bicycles, etc. While working with distractions, it is best to work on a short leash at first, then a longer leash, and finally progress to off-leash.



    How to teach your puppy to heel

How fast are German Shepherds Run?

The German Shepherd ranks among the top fifteen breeds for speed in the world at 30mph.

This dog was originally bred to herd sheep, which makes sense for the dog to be fast. This is why the dog is so often used by police departments all over the world. Not only are these dogs fast but they are extremely agile.

What exercises good for German Shepherds?

These are some recommended activities and exercises together with your German Shepherd.

Hiking with German Shepherd

The German Shepherd is a great companion for people who love to hike. How the owner hikes depend on the amount of training the dog has.

A dog that is obedient and will respond to his or her name can hike off-leash, especially in less populated areas. A dog that is less trained should be walked on a leash and the owner may consider a Flexi leash. One way to assure that the German Shepherd can enjoy hiking is to train him or her in basic obedience training so that they will come when called and know how to heel.

When hiking with a German Shepherd, it is important to stop for breaks every twenty minutes or so, or sooner if the dog seems thirsty. The owner can carry a portable water bowl and give the dog bottled water.

To help cool the dog down, the owner can put water on the dog's snout as well. When taking water breaks, the owner should lift up the dog's paws to check for burrs, ticks, or stones. The owner can also check the dog's coat to be sure there are no burrs, ticks, or foxtails.

Be sure to hike when the temperature is not too hot. Dogs sweat through their paw pads and they can burn in hot weather even on soil or dirt. The owner should check the path for snakes and other dangerous animals to avoid their dog being bitten.

Bicycle with a German Shepherd

Considering the higher energy needs of this dog, biking is a good activity for both owner and dog. This activity also burns energy faster than basic walking and can be shortened to an hour or so versus a two-hour walk.

Before deciding to bike with a German Shepherd, do not decide to use a long leash and attempt to ride the bike with the dog. This can be dangerous!

There are attachments that can be bought and put on bikes so that the dog can run next to it. This is much safer for both of you. Secondly, be sure that you, the owner, are wearing a helmet and knee pads.

The attachment for the dog on the bike also has the dog attached to a harness and not around the neck like a regular leash. If you do decide to bike with your dog, there are certain steps you can take to get him or her used to the idea.

If your dog is not used to a bike, first begin with a Parked Bike. Get your dog used to the idea and sure give them a good treat.

First, use the leash and bring the dog up to the bike. Have the dog sniff around the bike. If your dog is reluctant to do so, place a couple of treats strategically around the bike and let your dog's nose work to find them.

After he or she finds the treats and eats them, praise your dog for being around the bike. Do this a few more times so the dog can get accustomed to the bike. While still holding the bike, grab the handlebars of the bike and the seat. The dog can also be treated.

Move on to a Moving Bike

After the dog becomes used to the parked bike, he or she will need to be accustomed to a moving one. First of all, begin with small movements such as using the handlebars to move the wheels. The dog should be on a leash and next to the owner. Move the bike back and forth slowly.

The dog can be treated for his or her cooperation. After two or three sessions of simply moving the bike, mount the bike and use your feet to move it back and forth. The dog should be kept a safe distance to operate the bike safely.

Use the Bike Leash

If your dog is not already accustomed to a harness, then begin this process slowly. First, allow him or her to explore and sniff the harness. Treat and praise the dog. Do not try to place the entire harness on the dog at once!

Begin by just placing the front straps on the dog and then quickly taking them back off. You can increase to have the harness on the dog for about ten minutes and treating him or her.

The bike leash will attach to the harness and begin by simply attaching these together while the bike is stationary and letting the dog get used to the sensation.

Your dog may fight at first but be calm and allow your dog to recover. After he or she sits or lays down calmly, reward him or her. After about four sessions, you can move on to moving the bike slowly using your feet to move.

Gradually, you can work up to moving the bike regularly. German Shepherds are intelligent and usually catch onto this process quickly.

Swimming with a German Shepherd

If you have a senior German Shepherd, he or she can still get a good deal of exercise by swimming. Swimming is a great way to aerobically exercise and help with joint mobility.

If your German Shepherd enjoys toys and fetching, the owner can get some pool safe toys and balls and throw them into the water and see if the dog will naturally try to fetch these items.

If the dog first seems hesitant or afraid of the water either begin with a wading pool or the shallow end. The owner should first enter the pool and then have the dog enter after him or her. The dog may resist at first, but the owner needs to be persistent.

At first, let the dog only up to his or her feet and let them get used to the sensation. The owner needs to do a few practice sessions and then can let go of the leash and go deeper into the water.

The inclination of most dogs will be to follow his or her owner and dogs will naturally swim. The owner should not splash or engage in play. Stay in a few moments and then let the dog get out and praise him or her.

After longer periods of time, the dog will be more willing to go into the water and the owner can add diving or games of fetch. Most German Shepherds are strong swimmers and once they understand water love to swim.

Agility Training (Throw & Fetch Game)

Last, but not least you should consider looking into agility training with German Shepherds. All dogs like throw and fetch games. These agile and fast dogs do wonderful at the sport.

It can also harness some of their natural herding ability. The most important part of agility training is good communication between the dog and the owner. As with any type of new training, but sure to take it slowly and treat and praise the dog.




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