Beginning to look for a puppy / future running partner

Exciting times ahead! My daughter runs marathons and trains on the local trails a few miles a few times a week, mostly alone, all year long. She’s ready for a running partner to train, works from home, and she and hubby have a 3 pack now lol… Two are older, the young guy they fostered they kept, even though he prefers his couch to trail running.
I live on the property, she works from home, the yard is well fenced, etc etc.
So, we’re thinking a late fall adoption of a pup who has a working dog parents, looks mean enough to deter weirdos on the trails, (why the hell are there so many?) and won’t find the cats yummy.
She’d like a longish coat (we’re in MA so snow), a larger breed, shepherd or husky type, and may be open to a purebred.
Maybe. But purebred goes against all of her rescue feels, so that might be a hard sell tbh.

Anyway, if you know/hear of an oops pregnancy with (appropriate) pups ready to go in October, we could be interested.
(And yes, we’re looking at local rescues and petfinders, but needing to know more about the parents and ability/desire to be a running partner makes that more of a challenge than usual) For instance—We all adore Kronky who sure looks like he’d be a great running buddy, but they fell in love with his silly face before they figured out he really prefers his couch. Since we’re adding a 4th dog, this one really needs to be ‘the one’ if all all possible. Tia.

Vizsla !!

I used to own a small dog treat business and attended farmers markets in FL. Every single Vizsla customer I had, was owned by a runner. I am talking long distance, covering miles and the batteries just do not wear out on these dogs.

Another option would be a German pointer either wire haired or smooth. They love to run too. And again, I know several pointers that are owned by runners or people that are active.

I know these breeds are shorter haired, but great options. A lightweight jacket is all they would need in the wintertime.


I think a German Shepherd mix would check all those boxes. I have one that is 35% GSD, and 25% coonhound, and she is a running fool. We go on 6 mile off-leash hikes and she’s running all over the place the entire time and probably covers 10-12 miles to our 6.


Thanks-Gotta Love a Visla!! We were a Weimy family, so are very familiar–those are grand doggers, just grand. Lurchers are another common runners’ breed, tbh they just look like bigger greyhounds to me. And for some reason she’s not into greyhounds—I think she wants a dog to groom tbh, her 3 are all short haired dogs lol.
She def might consider a Visla or Weim, but with so many needing homes is very reluctant to buy. And adopting a puppy with unknown parentage/hips/etc is too big a risk now that they have three dogs already, lol. If we adopt a 10-12 week old by say Halloween, that brings us to an August litter, and maybe, just maybe someone knows someone whose GS or Husky is oops preggers…


The problem with getting a puppy from a medium to large, intimidating breed - you won’t be able to run with it for well over a year. You want that puppy to mature to not stress the bones.

I would suggest looking at breeders with good performance lines and carry working titles. They will be more likely to physically hold up, and have better health screening. You can reach out to these breeders and ask about availability of older pups/dogs. A good breeder will take back dogs they have bred and working on rehoming to appropriate folks. Can’t hurt to ask.

I walk/bike by myself all over Durham with my older doberman. She’s fast and will keep up all day. Once the pup hits 18-24 months and can join us, ain’t no one going to come near me. He will probably mature at 90 pounds of lean muscle, with the cropped ears.


Yes, thanks, she’s prepared for the time and training it will take. (i mean, she’s a marathoner lol!) I suggested a Dobie too, but she’s pretty set on a more northern type i think. Someone else suggested contacting mushers for known working lines and health screening, and there are plenty in New England, so that might be a good option.


Keep in mind that the full coated northern breed dog may not be able to go for runs in the summer heat.

Wanting to know the history of the parents & have health testing is exactly why people choose responsible breeders. Going with an “oops” litter is really supporting what drives rescue, not supporting rescue.


As long as she’s prepared for a breed that is genetically prone to pulling … I know very few working line northern breeds who don’t naturally throw their weight into their leash/harness. Great for mushing, terrible for a runner’s form and shoulder health.

Also, as the owner of a double coated breed, they cannot run miles (or even half a mile) in summer heat. Not happening. I don’t even do agility in non-air conditioned gyms with mine above low 80 degrees - just too much heat stress.


That is a good point—i’ll bring it up at dinner. She doesn’t run when it’s hot or humid, unless training for a specific race. And for that she runs with her group. The dog will always come first, always.

If she wants something with some fuzz to fuss over and that can take miles of running, even in reasonable heat, she could go with some of the fluffier sight hounds - a saluki or borzoi.

Hell, if she wants to always be envious of her running partner’s hair, an afghan hound. While not as intimidating as a huskie, they are BIG, aloof dogs and most people give them room.


Afghans, Salukis and Borzois are so awesome! I’ll mention it to her.

This is contradictory requirements - rescue but known parentage & health tested.

She’s not going to find a health tested, known entity of a puppy in a rescue, not without being incredibly lucky (and the pup incredibly unlucky). Good breeders take their puppies back to place themselves. Good breeders have contracts with their pet homes saying “you will return the dog if you can’t keep it”.

Looking for a rescue with all the health tests & clearances is going to be like trying to find the horse that can jump 3’, is 16 hands, has no maintenance issues, and is less than $2000. Yes, the unicorn sometimes exists but only very very rarely.

If she wants a known entity & health tests, she’s going to have to go with a breeder who does those things and those people almost never have an “oops” litter. Otherwise, she’s going to have to roll the dice on a unknown rescue.


OK, my thoughts. It might be possible to find this dog at a rescue, but if looking for a performance partner - go with a breeder. Why is she reluctant to buy?

And definitely not a coated breed.

That doesn’t mean she needs a puppy; it is possible to find breeders who are looking to rehome healthy, tested adults, which would also give her the opportunity to start training it for running right away.

Not sure there is really a need for a “mean looking” dog; most dogs will be a deterrent to attackers, even small ones.

Breeds that will run well with humans are going to be medium size that have an efficient trot gait and are bred for endurance versus speed. Single coated breeds would be best suited for longer runs to prevent overheating.

Breeds I’d suggest –
Brittany (my breed - and I know someone who did ultramarathons with one)
Certain larger hounds like Harrier or Foxhound
Maybe Doberman; not sure how well they would do for 10+ miles, for example

I would probably not choose a lurcher or larger sighthound because I don’t think they are as good at long distance/endurance running than sprinting.

But for the time spent running I would absolutely, 100% want it to be clear of dysplasia (hips and elbows), good patellas and heart certification.


There is actually a facebook group for this named “Retired show dogs or breeders looking for forever homes” -

Many of the dogs on there are quite young - they just didn’t mature into what their breeder wanted in their program OR they never took to showing , so they are spayed/fixed and found pet homes. Lots of ISO posts as well that seem to get decent responses.


I would 100% avoid any sort of longer coated breed as a running partner. Musher’s have to seriously cut back their training in the summer months. Even during long races (the Iditarod, Yukon Quest, etc) many of them race through the night when temps are cooler. Those dogs can overheat even when the temps are hovering around the freezing mark.
And unfortunately if you find a dog that loves to run they aren’t going to want to stay home when it’s too hot. My Dad used to run marathons and did a couple Iron Man races. He would have to sneak out of the house every time he went for a run because it was simply too hot for the labs. And those were labs that can spend all fall out hunting, not your chunky couch potato labrador.
I have an Aussie x Bernese and we skijor, but she doesn’t run with me if it’s warmer than 5C (40f).

My next dog will be a GSP. I’d much rather put a coat on the dog to go skijoring vs leaving them at home for half the year because they’re too hot.


Born to run for miles and miles.
Still fierce enough to protect their charges. When the temps go way down they might need a coat, but they do well in cooler temps as well.


Sighthounds typically aren’t distance runners, just fyi.

What about a dalmatian?

Whoops, @BrendaJane beat me to it!


Definitely not sighthound, most like the couch much more than exercise. If she liked to jog a casual 5 K, for sure … but not a marathon.

Yes to Doberman. Great athletic dogs, if running in the winter maybe a jacket required but typically fine a pretty chilly temperatures. Clean, not smelly, good with families, kids, cats other dogs etc … but make sure you work with a reputable breeder (Soquel, Wrath Liberator, Deerrun to name a couple top ones) to make sure you can get longevity and genetic testing to improve those odds. They do have genetic diseases, many of which can be easily avoided but the irresponsible breeders make irresponsible choices. Just my opinion, of course, as a fan of the breed for decades.

1 Like

If you’re thinking Viszla or Weimaraner, what about a Wirehaired Viszla or Long-Haired Weimaraner?

Or a Standard Poodle? Clipped in the summer, furry in the winter.