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I introduced Sherman to the treadmill today. The weather is dreadful and I don't like taking my toddler out in the jogging stroller when it's so awful out. It went much easier than I thought it would--I just introduced him to it and let him walk for 30 seconds (lots of treats and praise). Then I did my 2 miles on it. He stalked me the entire time! So when I finished, I gave him a turn--he did 1/2 mile! And seemed to really like it!

Does anyone have any experience with this? I'd love to have an alternative to walks in crappy weather, but want to make sure I'm not overlooking something health-wise. I was right there, straddling him or standing next to him the whole time.
 

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sorry but it IS a health issue, unless you've got a treadmill with an 8 foot long bed to accomodate their longer stride.
They do make them, but they're pretty expensive.
 

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Humankind. Be both.
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sorry but it IS a health issue, unless you've got a treadmill with an 8 foot long bed to accomodate their longer stride.
They do make them, but they're pretty expensive.
Can someone post the research behind this. I'm not disputing it, I just want to be able to point to it.

So, the issue is that the dog has to shorten his stride to stay on the shorter belt. Doing that over time messes with the muscle development b/c of the altered stride, right? Are there studies that show that shorter belt use over x amount of time becomes harmful? I'm wondering if there's thought to be a difference between someone using a short treadmill for regular indoor conditioning vs. more of the periodic user?
 

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Loving goldens since '95
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How old is your golden? I'm not an expert but I would think it would be ok at low walking speeds when the stride is much shorter, and for very short periods of time if your dog is under 18 months old.
 

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It is extremely important that the belt be not only long enough, but also wide enough to accomodate a dogs gait at extension. Too short a belt can teach a dog to habitually short stride, which can contribute to injury.

Just Labs​
: Have you ever tried teaching a dog
to walk on a treadmill? Would this be a good
alternative to outdoor winter exercise?

Dr. Zink:​
“Treadmills are a great tool for indoor
endurance training. However, before you put your dog
on the treadmill in the basement, there are a few things
to consider:
“1. The treadmill must be long enough that the dog
doesn’t feel he is going to step off of it. A good rule of
thumb is that the treadmill should be two- to threetimes
the length of the dog’s body from the front of the
chest to the back of the butt. This rules out most human
treadmills for large and giant breed dogs. ‘Double-wide’
treadmills also allow you to walk next to your dog.
“2. The treadmill should not face a wall or object that
is closer than 12 feet or so. This may cause your dog
to alter his stride length from concern of ‘running into
an object.’
“3. The trot is the best pace for a total body workout.
It is the only gait that is symmetrical and thus exercises
the dog’s right and left side evenly. Remember that a
treadmill will never match the training of the outdoors,
as it does not vary the terrain, incline, or pace.
“4. A dog should never be tied or harnessed to a treadmill
in case he falls or trips during exercise.
“5. Finally, not all dogs will tolerate a treadmill and
some find them boring (just like their human counterparts!).
We would recommend trying one out first prior

to making the investment.”
 

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It is extremely important that the belt be not only long enough, but also wide enough to accomodate a dogs gait at extension. Too short a belt can teach a dog to habitually short stride, which can contribute to injury.


“2. The treadmill should not face a wall or object that
is closer than 12 feet or so. This may cause your dog
to alter his stride length from concern of ‘running into
an object.’


I never would have thought of that! How interesting! It makes perfect sense that the dog would shorten their stride when in front of a wall.
 

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Realistically, unless you reallllly have the dog moving quickly, there is no way 8ft is necessary.

Horses strides are 12ft. We're talking a 1200lb animal, and you're saying anything less than 8ft is not enough for a dog? I beg to differ, one vet's opinion or not.

If you're exercising your dog at a light jog/trot (which personally I would never get them going faster than that indoors anyways) on a treadmill, surely the standard is suitable. So long as it's not the primary outlet for exercise, and merely used to get out of bad weather or on top of an outdoor schedule -I can't really see there being a need for a treadmill bed 3 times the length of a dog?
 

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Realistically, unless you reallllly have the dog moving quickly, there is no way 8ft is necessary.

Horses strides are 12ft. We're talking a 1200lb animal, and you're saying anything less than 8ft is not enough for a dog? I beg to differ, one vet's opinion or not.

If you're exercising your dog at a light jog/trot (which personally I would never get them going faster than that indoors anyways) on a treadmill, surely the standard is suitable. So long as it's not the primary outlet for exercise, and merely used to get out of bad weather or on top of an outdoor schedule -I can't really see there being a need for a treadmill bed 3 times the length of a dog?

Well, you and I, and MANY vets, handlers, and breeders, will agree to disagree. Movement is far too important to simpy write it off as you appear to. I've seen the damage done, and that is good (bad) enough for me, thank you.
 

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It is extremely important that the belt be not only long enough, but also wide enough to accomodate a dogs gait at extension. Too short a belt can teach a dog to habitually short stride, which can contribute to injury.


Just Labs
: Have you ever tried teaching a dog

to walk on a treadmill? Would this be a good
alternative to outdoor winter exercise?
Dr. Zink:


“Treadmills are a great tool for indoor
endurance training. However, before you put your dog
on the treadmill in the basement, there are a few things
to consider:
“1. The treadmill must be long enough that the dog
doesn’t feel he is going to step off of it. A good rule of
thumb is that the treadmill should be two- to threetimes
the length of the dog’s body from the front of the
chest to the back of the butt. This rules out most human
treadmills for large and giant breed dogs. ‘Double-wide’
treadmills also allow you to walk next to your dog.
“2. The treadmill should not face a wall or object that
is closer than 12 feet or so. This may cause your dog
to alter his stride length from concern of ‘running into
an object.’
“3. The trot is the best pace for a total body workout.
It is the only gait that is symmetrical and thus exercises
the dog’s right and left side evenly. Remember that a
treadmill will never match the training of the outdoors,
as it does not vary the terrain, incline, or pace.
“4. A dog should never be tied or harnessed to a treadmill
in case he falls or trips during exercise.
“5. Finally, not all dogs will tolerate a treadmill and
some find them boring (just like their human counterparts!).
We would recommend trying one out first prior
to making the investment.”



Thanks will remember this when I buy one

ps wheres the thanks button on this site
 

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I think if one goes and watches the dogs trot around the conformation ring, beauty in motion, one will realize that an 8 foot bed is absolutely necessary to accomodate the natural reach and stride of these dogs.
And since they are hindered by their human handlers, they aren't being moved quickly by dog standards.
 

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I have a dog tread mill, it was made by a company called Grand Mills www.grandcarpetmill.com it was a gift from Ultimate Air Dogs when Teddi was dx hip dyplastic. It does not have a 8' bed. Now this is NOT an electric treadmill, it is dog powered. That may make a difference.

Unfortunately, Teddi grew taller than anticipated, and she is just a hair too tall for this treadmill now. We were going to donate it to somewhere, but never got around to it. I am going to teach Quinn to use it as I think it will be a great source of exercise when she is old enough to handle it. I put her on it now just to familiarize her with it. She does not have enough weight to move the belt.

I think our is the "grand deluxe". I will attach a picture.

Ann
 

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This is not a treadmill that I would use to condition a Golden, especially not one that may be in the conformation ring. Dog powered mills encourage a dog to move off the forehand, rather than with rear drive.
They are often used to condition pit bulls, as they do want very strong fronts.
 

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I didn't want to start a whole new thread for one question, but I was thinking of how I used to condition my wild wildabeast of a show pony - I drove the 4-wheeler up and down hills making him maintain the same trot. The hills really made him use his hind end.

Would this be something one could do conditioning a dog for the show ring? Or would the ATV in front of them do the same thing as a treadmill against a wall and cause them to shorten their stride?
 

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I didn't want to start a whole new thread for one question, but I was thinking of how I used to condition my wild wildabeast of a show pony - I drove the 4-wheeler up and down hills making him maintain the same trot. The hills really made him use his hind end.

Would this be something one could do conditioning a dog for the show ring? Or would the ATV in front of them do the same thing as a treadmill against a wall and cause them to shorten their stride?

I do road work on a bike, with the dog next to and slightly ahead of me just like in the ring. I don't use a Springer, I don't like them and feel it teaches a dog to lean to the side (there's plenty of posts on it here on the forum). I use a regular collar and lead. I've NEVER had a problem doing this. They ignore other dogs and people we might happen upon, and are focused on the work. I have conditioned them to what to do if the bike were to fall and they were loose - we've actually practiced it. They stop. Period. No running off. They come to me and wait. It's never happened for real, knock on wood, but I feel confident that we'd be okay if it did.
I have a huge hill on my property and I go to the top and throw a ball (or a Frisbee)for the dogs. They run up and down fetching and bringing it back. Builds fanstastic muscle, and in combination with the road work, I don't have stride problems. I could benefit myself from running up and down that hill, but, what the heck. I'm old. I don't wanna. ;)
 

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Hillwork is my favourite part of my running workouts (much prefer it to downhill) and hillwork on my horse was another favourite, maybe not for him, but I was careful and it was neat to feel him actually using himself and fully using the hind end underneath you.

Just a for the record on my original post....I have never, and will never put a dog on a treadmill, that was just my 2 cents....I think the way the OP meant it that for an everyday/non show dog once every so often a normal treadmill is probably not a big deal -and that is how I responded.
 

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I only use a treadmill when our weather is unsafe to exercise outside - we get an ice pack over the snow and I fear the dogs will injure themselves breaking through.
 
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