Can Poodles Run Long Distances?

If you are interested in taking your poodle for a run, but are unsure of his/ her capabilities, then you have come to the right place. I am here to answer any questions you might have regarding poodles and running.

Poodles can run a distance of three miles safely. Standard poodles are considered to be the best running partners out of all the poodle types. Poodles will need some training before running too long. Precautions should also be taken before running in extreme weather.

Before taking your poodle for a run, there are a few things that you should know regarding your poodle’s safety, which I will explain.

Poodles Running Long Distances

Despite what their reputation may show through movies and different types of media, poodles are not some simple lap dogs. Poodles are extremely athletic and very capable of running long distances.

In history, poodles were bred to be water retrievers in Germany.

Poodles were bred to go in the water and catch waterfowl. They were hunting companions in history.

Although this does not mean anything necessarily for running, it lends way to the poodle’s temperament. And, because of the poodle’s temperament, poodles are great runners.

In history, poodles were bred to be water retrievers in Germany.

Based on the poodle’s temperament, they are very high energy, athletic, and obedient dogs. These are all great qualities for a dog to have to be a great running partner. Although their history lends poodles to be great swimmers, it also gives them the athleticism to be runners.

With their high energy, poodles can last a long time running.

In fact, it is bad if you do not take your poodle outside to run. Without the exercise, poodles energy gets pent up inside. This can cause your poodle to get a little bit wild. So, it is honestly a great thing for you and your poodle to go for a run.

Along with their ability to run, poodles are able to do many other things associated with running.

For instance, when some other dogs would be hesitant to cross a stream or go into some mucky situations, poodles are more than happy to keep going with you.

As long as you are looking out for your poodle, he/she should be just fine.

However, this is a flaw with poodles and running.

They will keep running, even when they should not be. If you were running for too long, for too far of a distance, your poodle would just follow along, even if their body could not handle it. The sad truth is that your poodle would keep running until it killed him/her if you were running with them.

So, it is important that you use common sense when running with your poodle.

Although there are no specific guidelines to how long you can run with your dog, you should be able to tell when your dog is tired. Even if your poodle is by your side, he/ she may be panting extremely or running a bit slower.

As long as you are looking out for your poodle, he/she should be just fine.

Running According to Poodle Type

Although I have been speaking about the dog breed poodles in general up to this point, I would like to go deeper into poodles and running. There are three types of poodles:

  • Standard Poodle
  • Miniature Poodle
  • Toy Poodle

It is important to know that not all types of poodles are capable of running the same distance.

For instance, if you owned one of each type of poodle, there would be a pretty dramatic difference in the distance that each poodle would be able to run.

The reason there is such a large difference in running capabilities is because of their sizes. The standard poodle is the largest, with the mini poodle in the middle, and toy poodle being the smallest.

Although each type of poodle is pretty similar, they differ in their long-distance running abilities.

Running Capabilities with each Poodle Type

IntensityDuration
Standard PoodleHighLong
Mini PoodleAverageLong
Toy PoodleLowAverage

Although each of these poodles is capable and needs exercise, there are different extents.

The high end of intensity for running would be considered a full sprint. This high intensity is the poodle running with you at your fastest. The low end of intensity would be considered simply walking.

Standard Poodles

If you are looking for a running partner, standard poodles are the best for you.

Standard poodles are the largest of all the poodle types. They are not only the largest but they are also the original size of poodle. While the other poodle types have been bred to be their size, the standard poodle is the original poodle bred in Germany.

Standard poodles are capable of going long distances at a fast pace.

These poodles do best when there is a long run at a steady pace. The standard poodle is easily able to keep up to your speed while running.

Although there are many different things that will influence how long your standard poodle can run for, I would say that a safe guideline is to keep your dog running less than 3 miles.

However, if you talk to your vet, they will be able to give more specific guidelines for your dog.

Miniature Poodles

Although they are not as highly recommended as standard poodles are, mini poodles can still be good running partners.

Mini poodles are capable of running the same distances. However, they would do better at a slower pace. Mini poodles are great runners; however, they should not be sprinting. They can take a good jog, but not a full-on sprint.

This is simply because their legs are shorter.

Mini poodles have to move their legs much faster in order to keep up with you. So, your jog will be a sprint for them.

Toy Poodles

If short legs were a problem for the mini poodle, you can guarantee that the toy poodle will have some issues with running.

Toy poodles have very, very short legs.

This is why the recommended amount of running for toy poodles is not running. For toy poodles, it is best to keep it at a walk. Although you can take a brisk walk, you should not be jogging with their little legs.

Toy poodles can run for a pretty long period of time, but not as long as the standard or mini poodle.

So, if you are looking for a running companion, do not go with the toy poodle. The best type of poodle for running is the standard poodle.

Training a Poodle to Run

Now that you understand the guidelines towards poodles and running, it is time to train.

Running works the same for poodles. Just like we can’t just go straight from the couch to running a marathon, poodles need to train to get to a running level.

It is important to know that your poodle should be two years old before he/ she begins to go running with you. This is simply because up until 2 years, poodles’ bones are still growing. With this growth, it is much easier for your poodle to get hurt. So, wait until he/ she is two years old.

Once your poodle has reached this age, he/ she is ready to train to be a long-distance runner.

1. Take a Visit to the Vet

This is the best starting point for your poodle in their running.

Although I can write about poodles in general, I do not know your poodle specifically. There are so many things that your vet can do for you in assuring your poodle is safe to begin running.

If there are any possible problems with your poodle’s legs that would need to be looked at and fixed before running, your vet can handle that.

Your vet can also give you a better estimate of how much your specific poodle will be able to run.

2. Start with Walks

Although you should already be taking your poodles for walks, this is the best starting point.

Start slow.

The duration of your poodle’s walk does not have much significance. With walking, your poodle should easily be able to last long distances.

Your starting point should not even require you to be in workout clothes. Simply walk at the pace that you would walk around the store.

3. Gradually Speed Up

Your poodle should easily get the hang of a slow walk.

Each time you take your poodle for a walk, go a little faster. You can switch to a brisk walk. Then, a speedy walk. You can keep getting faster with jogs until you have completely made it to a run.

You may be at a point where you just want to sprint.

However, you must keep your poodle in mind when you are going running. It took you time to get to a full run. Your poodle needs time too. Although you can push your poodle to go a bit faster, do not speed up too fast.

Keeping Your Poodle Safe on the Run

Once your poodle is able to run, you are going to walk to ensure his/ her safety. The most significant factor in your poodle’s safety while running is the weather.

Just like us, extreme weather is not easy for poodles to run in.

Hot Weather

Although it is natural for most people to watch out for their dog in the dog, I feel that it is still important to point out that poodles do not have the same protection as we do in the heat.

On blacktop surfaces, your poodle’s paws can easily get burned in the heat.

We have the protection of our shoes. However, a poodle with bare paws is in danger when it is hot outside. Luckily, we can prevent any harm through paw wax.

Paw wax has a simple application. And it will ultimately save your poodle’s paws from damage.

However, here is a guide for what temperatures to look out for.

Temperature (F)
60- 70Great weather. No worries.
70- 80Keep an eye out. Risks not likely.
80- 90Dangerous temperatures. Be cautious.
90+Potentially life-threatening.

Just like the heat affects us even more while we are running, your poodle is more at danger in the heat.

Poodles are at risk of heat stress and heat stroke. This could ultimately lead to death for your poodle. So, it is important to watch out for warning signs before it happens.

Some of the warning signs are:

  • Red gums
  • Excessive panting
  • Glazed eyes
  • Drooling
  • Excessive Thirst
  • Fast Heartbeat

At first sight of these things during a run, you should immediately stop your run. Give your poodle some water. Although you will still be in the heat, no movement and water will significantly help your poodle.

Another thing to consider when running in the heat is a cooling vest. This will simply drop your poodle’s body temperature and risk of heatstroke.

Cold Weather

Most people do not like to run during the winter outside. But, if you are one of these people, then you will want to follow these guidelines for being outside in the cold.

Temperature (F)
Over 45Your poodle is safe.
35- 45Put a jacket on your poodle.
20- 35Dangerously cold for your poodle.
Below 20Watch your poodle closely. 
Risk of hypothermia and frostbite.

Luckily, there are coats available for your poodle as well.

These coats will keep your poodle warm the same as they do for you. However, once the temperatures drop below 20, it is difficult for the coats to do much for your poodle.

Once the temperatures have reached that point, your poodle could get hypothermia or frostbite.

Luckily, with exercise, your poodle’s body temperature will rise. However, if you are seeing any of these warning signs, you should go inside and get your poodle warm.

  • Shivering
  • Poodle looking around for warmth
  • Whining
  • Slow movements
  • Poodle being anxious
  • Poodle walking with a paw or leg lifted

Although you should be watching out for your dog when running anyways (checking for exhaustion), you will want to be especially aware of your poodle when it is cold outside.

As long as you are looking out for your poodle, both of you should be just fine on your run.

What to Bring on Your Long Run

Now that you are prepared to go running with your poodle, I’ll just remind you of a few things that you will want to bring on your run.

1. Water

When your poodle is exercising especially, it is so important to stay hydrated. This will keep your poodle healthy throughout the run.

Like I mentioned earlier, your poodle will just keep running. But really, he/ she will be very eager for some water. My favorite time to give my poodle water is halfway through. We’ll take a little water break at half point and then head back.

2. Poop Bags

No matter how hard you try to get your poodle to go to the bathroom before they leave for the run, he/ she will always want to take his/ her poop during your run.

You will not want to be in the unfortunate situation where your dog has just pooped and you have nothing to pick it up with.

3. Treats

This is especially useful when you are training your poodle.

By giving your poodle treats throughout the run, he/ she will have more of a desire to keep up with you. And, poodles just love their treats, so you can make your poodle happy.

4. Stroller

This is not necessary if you are running with a standard poodle. However, it is useful with a mini poodle and especially a toy poodle.

With a stroller, you can simply run with your poodle in the stroller.

Often they will stand if they want to run with you. However, you can use your common sense to put your poodle back into the stroller when you think he/ she has had enough running.

Now that you are fully equipped with the knowledge, you are ready to begin running with your poodle. I hope that you have the best time together.

Marryn Jenkins

I am a long time pet lover. There has always been a soft spot in my heart for dogs. Although I have owned many dog breeds in my lifetime, poodles have become my favorite. I have a standard poodle, Sally, and a miniature poodle, Luna. With my experience owning poodles, I am here to help you learn all about this wonderful dog breed.

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