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Hudsen, born 8-23-09
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I love to run and can't wait until Hudsen can run with me, but I definitely don't want to take him too soon!! My vet told me that I can start running with him at 6 months old because his growth plates will be formed by then. However, I've heard to wait much longer, so I'm really leery about this- I definitely don't want to cause him any hip or joint trouble from premature running. I typically run 4-6 miles 5 days/week and I know that will be wayyyy too much for him for a long time (if ever??). For anyone who runs, at what age did you start running with your goldens and how far? Even once they are fully grown, do you think 6 miles is too much? Any advice would be great!! I don't want to overdo it and hurt my little boy! Thanks!!
 

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Six months is way too early to start running a puppy, especially on hard surfaces. It's best to wait until they are around 18 months old to avoid any hip/joint injuries. I'm also a runner and I plan on gradually getting Tucker used to running with me now that he's just over 17 months old, but I'm going to take it easy on him and not push him too hard.
 

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Love my Golden Boys!!
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Hubby and I both run and we were also advised by our vet and trainer not to run with the puppies until they were at least 18 months old.
 

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Loving goldens since '95
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I've heard to wait until the pup is 18 months old before starting to run longer distances with them. I'm looking forward to getting back into running in the summer when Molson is the right age. Sometimes on our walks when we are in the park on soft grass, I do little 1 or 2 minute sprints with him (only as much as he would do chasing after another dog at the park) but that's all for now.

As far as 6 miles of running when he's full grown, I have no idea how much is too much! It probably depends what kind of surface you are on, and his general health. I would get his heart checked before starting major exercise like that, just to make sure that he doesn't have any type of cardiac conditions that would show up in the running!
 

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I am big on running trails with my guys. I never start before they are 18 months and now wait until about a two years and I have done x-rays to make sure the joints can handle the stress.

I would ask your vet why the OFA waits until 24 months to clear a dog if the growth plates and joint are done growing.

For any long distance running I would strongly recommend dirt or gravel trails.
 

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18 months MINIMUM, and even then, you must work up to any significant mileage, and be very conscious of the surface that is being run on.

I can't imagine being advised that 6 months is safe for a puppy to run...
 

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I ♥ Bailey and Annie!
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I would go with what everyone else said. You don't want to hurt your puppies joints and have big problems in the future.
 

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I waited until my golden Joplin was two, but then I ran 4-8 miles with him 6 days a week until he was about nine years old. I just wussed out of running bc of my work schedule, and hiked/walked instead at that point. Joplin lived past 15 with good hips & elbows.
 

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my vet/breeder said a year is fine for shorter distances (1-3 miles) on grass. we have always taken our dogs up to the local track and let them run or play (off lead) while we run- but it's different because they aren't forced to do anything.
 

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18 months MINIMUM, and even then, you must work up to any significant mileage, and be very conscious of the surface that is being run on.

I can't imagine being advised that 6 months is safe for a puppy to run...
Is this true for running off-leash on a dirt path through the woods as well?
 

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Hudsen, born 8-23-09
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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks everyone! I'm so glad I asked- 6 months sounded pretty early to me too, but I never would have thought to wait until 18 months. I appreciate the help. Just curious- how much walking can he do right now? Sometimes we only walk a mile because he takes forever to walk since we have to stop and sniff EVERYTHING and then he gets very stubborn and won't move. I've walked him as much as three miles one or two times. He is four months- is that too much?

Also, he runs to fetch the ball- it isn't sustained running, but he does go full blast. Is this a bad idea too at his age? Thanks! :)
 

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The big issue is sustained concussive gaiting on hard surfaces, such as blacktop or pavement. Running free on variable surfaces such as grass, sand, dirt is entirely different - this is usually inconsistent and the dog is not maintaining a pounding gait for any distance. I'm still fairly cautious with how long I'll let a youngster pound around, jumping, running, etc, although most will pace themselves pretty sensibly.
 

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I walk Bailey now 2-3 miles a day (two walks a day). Sometimes I can't do the second walk due to time issues or because I have to do other things with my son. So far I always have to convince my son (3 1/4) to sit in the stroller so that we can walk Bailey.

I started doing the two walks at 4 months, first just 1-2 miles a day and now up to 3 miles. I know even now at 6 1/2 months it takes me 45 -60 minutes to do 1.5 miles, she wants to sniff all the time and sometimes we also say hi to other dogs and their owner and have a short chit chat.
 

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