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127: How to Run With and Away From Dogs with Veterinarian Ernie Ward: Veterinarian and author Dr. Ernie Ward, DVM, CVFT, talks about why all dog breeds may make good running partners, the proper way to run away from a dog if you think he or she is about to attack, the importance of vaccinations, and Lyme disease. Serena...

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Veterinarian and author Dr. Ernie Ward, DVM, CVFT, talks about
why all dog breeds may make good running partners, the proper way
to run away from a dog if you think he or she is about to attack,
the importance of vaccinations, and Lyme disease. Serena Marie, RD,
shares some of her favorite unique vegan/vegetarian protein
options.
Featured Guest and Runner of the Week: Dr. Ernie
Ward
North Carolinian, University of Georgia College of Veterinary
Medicine graduate, Dr. Ernie
Ward, (who also happens to be an Ironman, certified personal coach,
surfer, and fantastic dad and husband) stops by to talk about best
dog running breed qualities, how to start running with your dog,
and more.

He wrote
Chow Hounds: Why Our Dogs Are Getting Fatter -A Vet's Plan to
Save Their Lives.
He gives dog owners tips on how to run with their dogs:

#1: It has to be the dog’s idea. The dog’s
personality and lifestyle have to match that of a runner.

Just because a breed is predisposed to running well, doesn’t
mean each individual dog will be an amazing runner.
He’s seen beagles who can outrun greyhounds by leaps and
bounds. He’s seen whippets that can hold their own against
labradors.
Short, stubby dogs might not be well suited for all climates or
conditions, but don’t let the breed be the persuading factor in
choosing a canine running companion.


#2: Start out slow and easy. Even people try
to do too much too fast (which can lead to injury), so the same
concept applies to our doggie friends.

If you and your dog haven’t been running together, start out
with a short run around the block of a quarter mile. Then gradually
let your dog work their way up in mileage.
He has treated dogs for overuse injuries, so be aware that that
could be an issue.


#3: Evaluate your gear. Develop a system that
works for you and your dog. Consider using the following:

A handheld, short, four-to-five-foot leash (don’t use
retractable leashes for running—think “lanyard of death”)
A running belt attachment
Collapsable water bowl for longer runs—account for your dog’s
ability to stay hydrated and take a rest break every thirty minutes
(dogs don’t perspire like we do)


He believes that all dogs have the potential to make great
running partners.
For both runners and cyclists, sometimes dogs may appear
ferocious or like they’re about to attack. In these instances, Dr.
Ernie gives the following advice:

Steer clear, and avoid the situation. Do not approach dogs.
Move to the opposite side of the road or trail.
Most often dogs react out of a fear response. Forward-posturing
behaviors (elevated stature, erect ears or tails, hypervigilant
posture) signal fear.
Don’t try to run away. If you do, try to seek protection like a
nearby house or a car if possible.
Stand still, be like a tree, and avoid eye contact. Most dogs
will rapidly approach you and then stop inches away from you.
If the dog tries to bite you, focus on getting out of the
situation and causing as little harm as possible to the animal and
yourself.
Some people try to strike the dog if it’s biting, and he
suggests not doing so.
Ninety percent of all potential harmful situations are
avoidable in his opinion.


What if you’re running with your dog, and you’re approached by
another oncoming dog?

Optimism bias: This is a mindset that says, “My dog is a nice
dog and likes other dogs. Therefore, all other dogs like my
dog.”
Try to remain as calm as possible, and try not to provoke the
dog. Put as much distance between you and the dog as possible.
Keep your dog restrained.


If you’re running near swamp lands, alligators, like most
reptiles are very docile. They’re not looking for a fight.
Accessibility: If you have access to calorically dense foods,
you’ll be more apt to overeat. If you have access to safe trails or
sidewalks or a nearby gym, you’re more likely to exercise.
The same thing applies to our pets—do you have access to safe
areas to exercise like a dog park?
Ernie is passionate about vaccinations and end-of-life car

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