As a dog owner or lover, I’m pretty sure that you must have seen your canine (or other pooches) running like there was no tomorrow. And at that moment, the first question coming to your mind might be, “how fast can a dog run?”
You may all know that some dogs can run really fast, while others only reach slow paces. There are various causes for this matter. Many assume that long-legged dog breeds have greater running capabilities than short-legged ones. Actually, this is not always the case. It can be true for Whippets and Bassets Hounds, but it doesn’t apply to Pembroke Welsh Corgi, those having really short and stubby legs.
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How do dogs run?
How fast can a dog run depends on different factors, especially their body structures and breeds. Nevertheless, all dogs have some common features that make them possible great runners. Here are the basic qualities affecting the way a dog run:
- Feet that grip the ground and long enough nails to ensure excellent traction. These physical characteristics seem like boots’ outsoles and enable them to turn well, regardless of surfaces (sources).
- A dual suspension gallop allows dogs to run faster and increases the distance too.
- The abundance of power and forwarding drive is probably the power abs and a flexible backbone.
When dogs run fast, they usually have an asymmetrical gait. This means that their feet will fall into the order: right front, left front, then right rear, and lastly, left rear. If they run slowly enough, you can notice that their front feet will lift from the ground before their rear feet tread down.
But in fact, you nearly can’t see this. Some really fast dog breeds have a dual suspension gallop. This feature helps them impel with four legs lifting off the ground simultaneously.
How fast do dogs run?
You may wonder what the dog running speed is. As mentioned above, this depends on different criteria, but the average dog speed is between 15 and 20 miles per hour for short-distance runs.
I will sort out these dogs based on their running capabilities, including the fastest dogs, the lowest dogs, and endurance dogs.
What are the fastest dogs?
I’m pretty sure that many of you will think of the Greyhound as the fastest dog breed in the world. And yes, you’re right. But how fast is the fastest dog, like this pooch? In fact, Greyhounds can run up to 45 miles per hour (mph), which is so fast that they are considered vital to cheetahs.
It seems to be that dog breeds with longer legs will be able to run faster than the short ones. One of the most typical examples are Deerhounds, Vizslas, and Salukis. Their fastest speeds can go up to 40 miles per hour.
Following this speed is 35 mph. What breed do you think can reach this pace? It is Labradors. So how fast can a Labrador run? The average speed of this dog is around 35 miles per hour for short races, and they are great for a running partner.
Although Pitbulls have stronger, more muscular bodies than Labradors, they are a bit slower than Labradors. And the question here is how fast a Pitbull can run? In fact, the maximum speed of these dogs is around 30 mph.
What about German Shepherds? How fast can a German Shepherd run? This dog breed with pointy ears is big and strong, but their running speed is slightly lower than these above ones, which is around 30 miles per hour. Having said that, this pace is still rapid among other breeds. Collies share the same speed as German Shepherds.
How do you think fast can a Corgi run? The fact will absolutely blow your mind. Although these dogs have short legs, many confirm that they can reach the speed of 23 miles per hour on flat ground. This is actually faster than how they look.
Some dogs run slowly
Not the dogs are born with great running capabilities like Greyhounds or Salukis. Some of them can only keep running at a slow pace, which is around 5 to 15 miles per hour.
Some dog breeds with small or miniature sizes can’t run fast and only reach the speed of 5 or 6 miles per hour. Short-nosed pooches like Bulldogs or Pugs also can’t reach higher paces. The reason is that they are easily suffering from breathing problems due to their muzzle shape.
For example, Bulldog breeds rank first with a speed of 15 mph. Following them are Basset Hounds and Pug. These two breeds can reach speeds of between 5 to 10 mph.
Best endurance dogs
You know running is not always about speed or pace. It is also measured based on endurance or the ability to maintain a certain speed for a specific time duration (usually in long periods). So if you are an endurance runner, you will definitely love to have a dog with this capability. He will become your best running buddy.
Here are some of the dog breeds that can remain the same speed for a particular duration.
- German Shorthaired Pointer
- English Setter
- Siberian Husky
- Australian Shepherd
- English Springer Spaniel
- American Staffordshire Terrier
These breeds all have medium or relatively large sizes and share a consistent pace of 10 to 15 miles per hour.
Depending on your dog breed and his running capabilities, there are lots of ways you can train your canine to run. For the fastest dogs, sprinting exercises might be the best one for them. Jogging seems to be suitable for slower dogs like Pugs or Bulldogs. And if you have a Siberian Husky, it’s best to take him to weekend hiking.
Also, you need to keep in mind that not all dogs are that fast or slow. Their pace depends on various factors such as breed, health situations, age, etc. Make sure you train your pooch with appropriate exercises. This way, you will improve his running speed and health as well.