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Dog Walker Vs. Dog Runner: Top 5 Reasons to Upgrade

Posted on 10/22/2013 by Ali Meza in dog running dog health dog walker top 5

More and more dog owners are hiring dog walkers to take their dogs out while they are away. It has gone from a “luxury service” to a necessary expectation of owning a dog, especially for busy professionals. But your dog could need more...

Until recently, hiring a dog walker was the best option for busy professionals, but veterinarians, dog trainers, dog walkers, and especially dog owners, have come to understand that most dogs need more.

Enter the Dog Runner.

If your dog is bred to run, like most hunting breeds, shepherds, pointers, retrievers, and super-mutts, a daily run is usually necessary to their physical and mental health. If you can’t run them yourself, hiring a Dog Runner could change your life, especially if your dog is:


-A Leash Puller

-Full of Energy

-Depressed or Alone All Day

-Anxious or Destructive, etc.

Top 5 reasons to fire your dog walker and hire a dog runner:

1) Running will help your dog live a longer, healthier life.

It is no secret that proper exercise reduces health problems, make us feel better, and help us live longer. But your dog only has access to as much exercise as you give them. And if they are not elevating their heart rate every day, they are at much higher risk for developing heart disease, arthritis, and a host of other illnesses that will cramp their style and cost you a ton. Your dog’s health depends on YOU, and preventative health care kicks ass.

2) Your Dog Will Get In Shape Faster Than You.

Most dogs were born to run, but if dog owners are not runners themselves, they might have no idea what their dog is actually capable of. Given the chance, dogs can get in shape and increase their endurance much faster than humans.

3) A Good Dog Runner is a Double Threat.

Bo Jackson. Deion Sanders. Michael Jordan. Dog Runners.

Dog Runners are athletes, so they can easily keep up with high-energy breeds. But they are ALSO very tuned into dog physiology.  They know how far to push a dog, and when to reduce the pace. For senior dogs, puppies, out-of-shape dogs, or those with physical limitations, experienced Dog Runners will clip along at a fast-paced walk to elevate their heart rates while accommodating their abilities.

4) For Dog Psychology, There Is a HUGE Difference Between a Run And a Walk.

During a run, dog’s brains go into “working mode.” The fast pace requires dogs to pay close attention to their human “pack leader”, requiring constant mental focus to navigate sudden changes in terrain and direction. New research shows that mental stimulation is as exhausting to dogs as physical exertion, so after a run, dogs are left double tuckered out. They cover more ground (or patrol more territory), and they are left with a bigger sense of accomplishment. During a run, oxygen-rich blood pumps into the brain, promoting neuron growth and stimulating brain function and memory. Dogs can even get a “runner’s high” like humans!

A strong sense of closeness forms between the dog and the runner. Jogging definitely builds a bond.

These psychological effects all serve to mentally balance a dog. Most people don’t realize that they can correct their dog’s behavior simply by providing proper exercise. Anxiety, destructive behavior, and excess energy are all symptoms of a dog that just needs to werk it out (P.S. The same is true for humans.)

5) Still not convinced? Take it from Cesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer, whose philosophy is: “Exercise, Discipline, Affection, In That order!”

Cesar says, “Letting the dogs out in the backyard is no substitute for exercise. Dogs today don’t hunt for their food anymore, but they should work for food. And that work needs to include walks during which the dog is focused on obeying commands to be physically and mentally engaged. Exercise is vital to a pet and to any weight-loss program.”

Remember, the optimal amount and intensity of exercise depends on the age, breed and health of the dog; some are so overweight that short walks are the only option at first A Dog Runner should offer a free trial run to evaluate your dog’s physical capabilities and prepare an exercise plan. Make sure that they are licensed, bonded, insured, and pet-CPR certified.

Dog Runner prices are usually slightly higher than dog walker rates, but the value is exponentially higher. If your dog will play fetch, you can take them out to an off-leash dog park and run ‘em with a tennis ball and a Chuck It Launcher. Its free, and plus, dog parks kick ass too. 

Is your dog a runner? Are you? Comment below and let me know what werks!