How Fast Can Dogs Run?

how fast can dogs run

June 17, 2021

How Fast Can Dogs Run?

Here Is Everything You Need To Know About A Dog’s Speed

You must have seen a dog run with their tails wagging and their tongues hanging while they try to run as hard as they can with their tiny legs to match your speed and wondered, “How fast can dogs run?”. They sure do look super cute. These creatures are not the fastest ones on earth, but they definitely want to be your running partner whenever you go out. 

Needless to say, every dog runs the way they want to. However, the running speed of a dog depends on their breed and their physical health or sometimes weight, too. Different dogs can run anywhere between 15 to 20 miles per hour. This means they are good at speed and can chase you if they want. 

Here are some fascinating things you should know about a dog’s speed. 

Factors That Affect How Fast Dogs Can Run

Some physical factors help determine how fast you can run. These factors usually include


These factors work in dogs just the way they work in humans. You can’t make an old man run in a park or even in the house. You don’t expect them to. 

Likewise, in dogs, the older the dog, the slower they would be. Or maybe this also depends on how feisty and playful your dog is. Older or adult dogs mainly want to preserve their health by eating little food and limited physical activity. 

Unlike the young ones, adult dogs do not run about the house and stay in their spot until asked to move. 

On the other hand, young dogs love to play and are lively enough to go out and run frantically. They love going on a walk, chasing you, or running alongside you even if they are too big to catch up with you. 


Bits of research show that male dogs run much faster than females dogs. It is associated with muscle strength, aerobic power, and the way a dog’s body is built. 

The same is the case with every other species, where dogs have more stamina and the power to run faster than females. However, there are exceptions, and female lions run faster and are swifter in the running than male lions. 


The size of the dog matters significantly when it comes to how fast a dog can run. Bigger dogs like great danes can make quicker sprints, while the smaller dog breeds like Shih Tzu would struggle a tad more with running at a reasonable speed. 

Hence, the running ability varies amongst breeds. Every breed has its own strengths and weaknesses that determine how fast it can run. 

The endurance of a species is also essential. For example, dogs with smaller faces find it harder to breathe than dogs with more prominent faces because of the shape of their skulls. 

Breathing difficulties become more pronounced during the summer season, and such dogs should not be made to run a lot. 

Activity Level

A dog that loves to run will never get tired of running. In contrast, a lazy dog with no motivation for physical activity would prefer to crash in its favorite spot. 

Therefore, the motivation of every dog is essential to know how much they can run and how fast. You can’t make a clumsy dog sprint, and you can’t tame a lively dog to sit and not run around. Also, you need to make sure you are feeding your dog with high calorie dog food so that your dog’s nutritionals needs are met.


A healthy dog means a healthy lifestyle that facilitates excellent physical health and running. A sick dog can never run as well as a healthy dog. 

Similarly, a dog with congenital problems like hip dysplasia or weak bones will find it harder to run than the general population of dogs of the same breed. 

Congenital anomalies are pretty common in dogs and can’t be ignored when talking about the speed of a dog. 

dogs running together how fast can dogs run

The Fast Dog Breeds

Naturally, the fast ones have longer legs, lean bodies, and incredible muscular strength. These include:

  • Greyhound
  • Saluki
  • Afghan Hound 
  • Vizsla
  • Jack Russell terrier 
  • Dalmatian
  • Borzoi
  • Whippet
  • Doberman Pinscher
  • Border Collie
  • German Shepherd 
  • Giant Schnauzer
  • Italian Greyhound 

The Slow Dog Breeds

The slower ones with tiny bodies and cuter paws include:

  • Shih Tzu 
  • Pug
  • Old English Mastiff 
  • Toy poodle
  • Bulldog 
  • Basset Hound 

So How Fast Can Dogs Run? Signs To Look For

So, how can you tell if your dog is slower or faster than the rest?

Maybe someday you can make them race with a neighbor’s dog and find out. But there are some ways to tell if your dog is one of the faster ones.

The way they run can tell you a lot. For example, before they are ready to sprint, their posture is associated with how much they prepare themselves because the correct way of running means faster running. 

For instance, when they chase you, they are mainly able to catch you or outrun you. Other times, they may run in a synchronized manner. It means they move their front and back legs together for a faster sprint. 

They may also adjust their bodies to adapt against air resistance by keeping their ears down. 

You Can Train Your Dog To Run Fast

Not all dogs are made to run fast, and you should not push them beyond their limits. However, you can always train your dog, so they should stay in good health and physique. 

First, determine their diet, so they do not overdo their calories. Their lean body is crucial not only for fast running but also for good health. 

On the flip side, you can get yourself proper running gears and remember to start slow. 

how fast can dogs run

Final Thoughts

A dog that runs fast is an excellent workout partner. You can run great distances with them, and they would love to be next to you when you both are outdoors. 

You can’t make a dog with tiny paws take significant steps. Hence, if you want a canine companion who is ready to sprint off with you, you need a physically strong and mentally active breed and feisty. 

This will be a whole lot of fun for your workout routines. 

If you want to know about the latest information about dog food, visit Dog Food Desire. 

If you’re interested in seeing or commissioning a painting of your speedy (or not so speedy) companion, visit our Dog Painting page or email us directly at [email protected].

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