i’ve had several people ask me recently my thoughts on running with dogs. there was a time when i thought it really depended on the dog and figured most people just used their common sense and did only what they knew their dog could handle. well, there’s more to it than common sense because dogs are pleasers and they will go until they suffer a heat stroke. i sent a similar email to this last year and that very night, at about 7:30, Keith and i were driving home and saw a dog that had fallen out in the street. we stopped to help his owner and the dog- they hadn’t even been running 8 minutes by this time. before we could even get them to the emergency clinic, she had suffered 3 seizures. it took lots of fluids, a ton of tests, and a boat load of money for this poor kid to get his dog (an 8 month old Weimaraner) healthy again.
also, brachycephalic dogs (short snout) should not be in the heat at all as panting does not work as a cooling mechanism for them. instead, it works as an internal heater. dogs with thick coats and darker colored hair are also more susceptible to fall victim to heat illness or stroke in less time than you would imagine.
this chart shows you how how the asphalt can get (don’t forget, a dogs pads are not the same as shoes!):
and this chart shows how, as the temps increase, the humidity causes the heat index to rise even quicker:
stay safe and keep your pups safe!!