Canicross

Moobli

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13 June 2013
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Those that do canicross, what age do you start any serious running with your dogs? I would like to get back into running and used to go out regularly 3-4 times a week but my dogs just ran loose. I have recently bought a harness, line and belt and would like to have a try at Canicross. Sadly I do think I will have to wait a few more months before taking my youngster out as he is 8 months (GSD). I am guessing the minimum age for him would be 12 months but probably ideally nearer 18 months? Any tips or advice welcome.
 

Cahill

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9 March 2007
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i didnt start with mine untill they were older,not being a runner i started the c25k so they got fitter with me but even so,managed everything easily,and i felt i was not asking them to do what i couldn`t.
we would come back from a 30 min run and they still wanted to go over the field after.
i should imagine it depends on growth plates.
good luck,i love canix.
 

vallin

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Advice is 12 months for a 'normal' sized breed, longer for anything bigger. However, there is also the argument that actually running gently, in straight lines is easier on developing joints than hooning around....
 

BBP

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Our collie has just started doing proper runs now (when I say proper, I mean not my measley slow jog for short distances but my partners pace over longer distances), he is 18months.
 

CorvusCorax

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I would wait til 18 months or at least until after x-ray, but do prep work/work on the ground to prepare him.

My old dog was x-rayed at 13 months and although I could see they were good, waited til results were back (was another couple of months) but during that time got him to walk beside bike nicely and taught him command to pull into leash for running etc.
Eight years old, still fit as a fiddle, no sign of stiffness or slowing down and still doing everything at 100mph :)
However he is small/light-framed and on the light side generally according to breed standard. The bigger they are, the slower I would take it.
 

blackcob

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Shropshire
The bigger they are, the slower I would take it.
Wot she said. I started a Siberian at 12 months but even a modestly sized GSD is going to have 10kg+ and a few more months of growing on them compared to a sibe so closer to 18 months sounds sensible.

Sharkpup has just started foundation agility at 7 months of age (gasp, horror!) but he is already at his adult height and no more than a couple of hundred grams off his adult weight. Were he big enough not to tread on I'd have a harness on him before 12 months. :p
 
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I did a little cani cross when they were both 12 months old-the recommendations were 12 months for most dogs and 18 months for larger breeds. tbh the amount and speed I run at it was no big deal but Quarrie found it way too exciting so I stopped with him until fairly recently. There is canihiking which you could use to get him used to commands etc line out, hike on, directional commands and 'behind' are all good ones to have sorted before running down hills.
 

Clodagh

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17 August 2005
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Essex
Thanks all. 18 months or more it is then. I can do a bit with my 8 year old shepherd and the collies for now.
As I said to Levrier when she started going out with the longdogs attached to her, that I hope they never saw a rabbit,. I hope for you that when attached to the collies they don't hear your OH whistle!
 
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