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GWP and Running

 
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emagilligan
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Joined: 21 Sep 2006
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Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: 12/16/06, 1:57 pm    Post subject: GWP and Running Reply with quote

I wonder if anyone runs with their GWP regularly? We are waiting until our puppy turns 1 to start running with him, and we will stick to the trails to avoid any joint problems, but I want to know what kind of distances are healthy and realistic for us once we start running together.

Thanks for any information.
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allourmuddys
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Joined: 30 Nov 2006
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Location: Kentucky

PostPosted: 12/16/06, 9:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My wife and I foster GWP's for GWP Rescue and have found after conditioning the dogs can easily run a couple of miles while we ride a bike. At one point we had 5 dogs to exercise everyday. One male we fostered was barely winded when we finished our normal route - a bit annoying! You'll find that the exercise makes them an even more enjoyable companion. I also know from hunting my dogs that every mile I put on, they put on 2 or 3 and can go all day. Have fun!!
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dualgwp
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Joined: 19 Oct 2002
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Location: New Hope PA

PostPosted: 12/17/06, 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We always free run our puppies from the day they get here. They pace themselves pretty well and when they get tired we head home. This teaches them to be free, to watch for us, and to take direction as well. They learn to jump logs, cross streams, and they learn to use their noses at the same time. In my opinion, there is nothing better in the world for a Wire puppy then to get free running time in the fields and the woods. Too many people are afraid they will run away and never let them go. Everyone can catch an 8 wk old puppy and this is the best time for them to learn how to be controlled and how to cooperate with you. This is when they learn to come when called, and how not to get lost. No reasonable puppy wants to be lost!

If you are a serious jogger I probably wouldn't ask a youngster (under 7 or 8 months old) to go for more than 20 minutes. And I probably wouldn't run them on roads or hard surfaces.

When we are conditioning the older dogs we free run them off of a golf cart for about 45 minutes as fast as we can go. Then we put them on a harness and trot them for 30 -45 minutes at a medium speed. Sometimes we add chains that they drag for an extra workout. This is all started slowly and build them up over a couple of weeks. One day free run, next day harness work. We normally do this 3-5 times a week according to what we are working toward and the age of the dog.

I always watch the dogs head and tail for signs of fatique. As long as their tail and head are up they seem to be fine. If I notice their tail dropping or their heads dropping it's time to quit for the day. Also watch their panting pattern, if their tounges are looking very red, or swollen at all it's time to stop for a breather. Some dogs can go very long distances, some can't. Some dogs are just more athletic than others.

I have a couple of ponds and streams on the course we run, so they get a chance to take a dip and get a short drink along the way as well.
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