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Why canicross isn’t just running with your dog

An overview of Episode 10 of the Active Dog Podcast

Why I wanted to cover this subject

Specifically in this summarised podcast episode, I wanted to address the misconception that Canicross is just another form of running with your dog. Recent incidents have prompted us to want to share best practice surrounding this exciting activity, emphasising its unique dynamics and the need for proper training and equipment.

The correct canicross equipment matters for you as well as your dog

Many start their Canicross journey with very basic equipment, such as a handheld lead or very simple waist belt purchased from a generic online retailer. However, the key to starting canicross successfully lies in understanding the nuances of the gear. A waist belt, should ideally be positioned on your hips, properly situated for stability. The lower lumbar region is vulnerable, and a well-fitted belt sitting on your hips distributes the force of your dog’s pull more effectively, minimising the risk of injury.

Canicross requires teamwork and training

Canicross is a collaborative sport, requiring teamwork between you and your dog. Training is essential to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. Voice cues play a crucial role, offering control in unexpected situations. Proper training sets the foundation for a harmonious run, preventing accidents and promoting a stronger bond between you and your dog.

Canicross impacts you physically and on your running style

Canicross not only impacts your relationship with your dog but also alters your running style. The forward pull from your dog running can lead to changes in your stride and in your foot placement when landing. Understanding the adjustments you may need to make is crucial for preventing injuries. Strength training, both for you and your dog, is also a recommended proactive measure to cope with the added physical demands of Canicross.

Canicross is about community and support

Canicross isn’t just a solo pursuit. Engaging with the Canicross community provides support, advice, and a shared passion for this unique sport. Whether through online forums or local groups, connecting with experienced Canicross enthusiasts can enhance your understanding and enjoyment of the activity.


In conclusion, Canicross isn’t just the simple act of running with your dog. It’s a nuanced sport that requires the right equipment, and proper training. Canicross is best enjoyed when it is approached with the right mindset and preparation and experiences are shared within the friendly and welcoming community. So, get your canicross kit sorted, start training with your dog, and you will then better enjoy the incredible journey of Canicross with your active dog!

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