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Can You Run With Your Bulldog? (Plus 4 Running Tips!)

You consider yourself as an athlete, and you own a Bulldog? Unfortunately, these companions aren’t well known to be very good as running partners. This dog breed can be extremely stubborn, relaxed and lazy. Even if they don’t seem enthusiastic about exercising, they need some daily physical activity like any dog!

Bulldog Running In Grass

However, you need to know a lot of things before you over-exercise your Bulldog. I personally really like running with my Labrador. Now I’m wondering if every dog breed is suitable for jogging. Can you run with your Bulldog? Let’s see what I’ve found about this interesting question!

Yes, you can jog very short distances or do brisk walks with your Bulldog. Running can be very difficult for your buddy. Bulldogs don’t have good stamina to keep up with you during long runs. Many animals of this breed won’t be able to jog more than 1 or 2 miles (1.6 or 3.2 km). Running long distances can be dangerous for most Bulldogs!

Let’s see how much exercise your buddy needs and if running is safe for him!

How Much Exercise Does Your Bulldog Need?

As you could notice, your buddy will probably need motivation to be active. Some dog owners could even ask themselves if their Bulldog needs exercise. Obviously like any animal, your dog needs to exercise physically and mentally every day. Therefore, you will need to motivate your companion a little bit to get fit!

Without enough physical activity, your Bulldog is very susceptible to obesity. However, don’t push your furry friend too much to exercise. This low energy dog breed won’t be able to do intense dog sport or activity. Is it OK to run with dogs? Now let’s see how much exercise your Bulldog needs to be safe, happy and healthy!

Running With Your English Bulldog:

These dogs are among the laziest breeds in the world. This fact doesn’t mean that they don’t need daily physical activity. English Bulldogs need around 30 minutes of exercise every day!

Bulldog Sitting In Leaves

That surprised me a lot when I found that many Bulldogs won’t have half of the workout time they need. Everything between 20 to 40 minutes of physical activity is relatively good depending on various elements. What’s important to know is that 40 minutes of exercise should be the maximum for an adult Bulldog!

Running With Your French Bulldog:

Even if these dogs also enjoy the apartment lifestyle, they are more active animals. Frenchies are more likely to like daily exercise. Their smaller size makes them less susceptible to get overweight!

Bulldog On Leash

French Bulldogs will need a little bit more exercising time. This breed will need around 30 to 45 minutes of daily exercise. Some more healthy and active Frenchies will be able to have more than 1 hour of physical activity every day!

What Makes Your Bulldog Suitable For Running?

Now that you know how much exercise your Bulldog needs, let’s look at their ability to run. Some buddies are awesome to run with. On the contrary, some dogs are just not good running partners!

There are many reasons why this breed isn’t the best to jog with. It’s important to know that not every Bulldog will be suitable to run safely. After this section, you will be able to understand more if your dog is suitable or not for running!


The first thing you should look to know if your dog can run safely it’s his health. Dogs with any kind of health issue aren’t suitable to run. Bulldogs are susceptible to various respiratory, cardiac and structural problems. That’s usually why they aren’t suitable to run with their owner!


The breed of your buddy can tell you a lot about his characteristics and personality. When I did my research on my dog’s breed, I found many interesting facts and information. I suggest you do the same and discover the ancestors of your companion!


Normally medium-sized dogs are the best for running such as Weimaraners, Vizslas or Border Collies. There are some exceptions such as Jack Russell Terriers or Beagles. Bulldogs are very small for their weight. This is another reason why they can struggle to do more intense activities!

Body Traits.

Some dogs aren’t suitable to run because of their body. Bulldogs have short noses that restrict them from breathing well. This feature is very likely to hurt your buddy if you push him to jog too fast or too long distances, The coat is also something to analyze if you want to run in hot or cold temperatures. However, Bulldogs can’t tolerate heat or cold temperatures very well!


This could be a big problem to start running with your companion. Bulldogs are low energy pets and don’t like to exercise. That’s a serious problem when it’s time to go on trails. Please don’t force your Bulldog to jog with you if he doesn’t want to!


These are the most important things to observe on your buddy. Many other things can change if your companion is suitable or not. As you can see, English and French Bulldogs are not always the best choice to run with. Here are some important things to know about this dog breed!

Bulldog Ready To Run

Important Infos To Know About Bulldogs Before Running!

Even if running isn’t difficult to learn, there’s a lot of information to be aware of. That’s especially true for breeds that aren’t well-suited to run. Let’s see what I’ve found out about doing canine sports with these massives dogs!

Health Problems of Bulldogs!

Crucial information to consider for intense activities is your dog health problems. A visit to your vet is always the best way to know if your dog is alright. Bulldogs are prone to cardiac and respiratory issues because of their small nose!

They can’t breathe and regulate their temperature well, that’s dangerous for your buddy. Moreover, their bad structure could cause them hip dysplasia and also restrict them to run. Make sure your dog is in tip-top shape before changing anything in their exercise routine!

Exercise At The Right Temperature!

Their difficulty to regulate their temperature makes them bad dogs to run in hot temperatures. Doing physical activity over 75 degrees Fahrenheit (24 degrees Celsius) can be very dangerous for your Bulldog. On especially hot days, they are very at risk of overheating and heatstroke!

This dog breed doesn’t support the cold either. (Under 45°F or 7°C could be uncomfortable!) That’s why the perfect temperature to exercise them is around 50-60°F (10-16°C)!

Overweight Bulldogs!

Make sure your dog doesn’t have weight problems before you start a dog sport. It could seem like a very good idea to start exercising an obese Bulldog with running. However, overweight dogs can develop joint issues with intense activities. Make sure you start slowly if your companion isn’t already fit!

Don’t Over-Exercise (or Run) Puppies!

Young dogs shouldn’t have too much exercise. Bulldog puppies should have around 10-15 minutes of physical activity a day at the start. You can slowly increase this exercise time up to 25-30 minutes every day. Bulldogs take around 2 years until they are considered adults. Don’t push your dog too hard before they are fully grown!

Puppy Bulldog Running

Can Bulldogs Run With You?

The easy answer would be no, but I don’t believe that there’s no way to run with your buddy. I know that Bulldogs aren’t the best jogging companions. Even if your dog isn’t « Pawfect » to run with you, there’s an adapted solution for him!

This dog breed would never be able to finish a marathon. However, they could be suitable for regular small jogs of less than 1 or 2 miles. (1.6 or 3.2 km) That is maybe not a lot of exercise for you, but that could be a very interesting activity for your buddy!

Always make sure you respect the desire and limits of your Bulldog. Normally this breed should be able to run around 15 minutes. Nonetheless, this capacity will depend on your dog’s shape, temperature, and many other elements!

If you think your companion can run with you, try it. You could start by introducing your dog to daily short walks. After your Bulldog feels comfortable with brisk walks, you could try alternating walking with jogging. This is an interesting way to improve your buddy’s physical capacity gradually to run safely!

Some dogs won’t be able or want to run, please respect them. You can always run without your Bulldog and find lower activities to play with him. There are so many ways to exercise your dog, running isn’t the only option!

What Type of Running Bulldogs Are Suitable For?

Every dog has strengths and weaknesses, make sure you understand your dog’s ones. Bulldogs are not very active companions, that’s why it could seem difficult to exercise them. Let’s see how you should run with your buddy!

English Bulldogs as Running Partners:

This breed is less suitable to jog with. My advice would be to try brisk walking instead of running. That could be a very fun activity to keep you and your English Bulldog healthy. If your walking partner tries to run by himself, you could consider introducing him to jogging!

French Bulldogs as Running Partners:

Frenchies are also not very good running partners. They can easily overheat after 10 to 15 minutes of jogging. Too intense exercising can also damage their joints or cause serious health problems. I would also suggest restricting yourself to dog walking. Let your dog do the first move to start considering running as an option!

American Bulldogs as Running Partners:

These medium-sized and strong dogs could be better jogging partners. This dog breed is more likely to keep up with your pace. American Bulldogs can run more long distances than Frenchies. They would be able to run around 1 to 2 miles regularly and up to 4 miles for experienced dogs!

General Advice To Run With Bulldogs!

Bulldogs aren’t suitable for long or fast runs. These low energy dogs would be more likely to enjoy brisk walks. The perfect jog distance for them should be around 1 mile or 15 minutes long. Don’t try to build stamina with these dog breeds, that’s not the problem. Their difficulty to breathe and regulate their temperature is what restricts them from long or intense physical activity! 

Bulldogs Running

The Best Alternative To Exercise Your Dog!

Lower activities or games could be more interesting for Bulldogs. Running is maybe too much for their shape or health conditions. Sometimes, jogging isn’t an option to exercise safely. Here are some alternative things for active owners to try with their Bulldog!

Play in Water or Leaves!

I think this activity is just amazing. It’s very surprising how easy it can be to play and have fun with your buddy. A simple sprinkler, a pool or some leaves and you can have fun with your Bulldog for hours!

Try Some Dog Toys!

Rope toys such as tug of war can be very interesting for bulldogs. Kong toys can also be a good idea to let your buddy busy while you’re out. Some puzzle games can also be very cool to entertain mentally your dog!

Backyard Fun Time!

You don’t need to always go to a dog park to play with your Bulldog. Your backyard can be the perfect place to enjoy the sun with your pet. There are many games and activities you can enjoy without a 15 minutes walk!

Run Around and Play Interactive Games!

Your companion will enjoy spending a good time with you. Every interactive activity will help you train and exercise your Bulldog. Things such as hide and seek or tag can be very fun to enjoy with your furry friend!

Try These Sports!

There are some lower energy sports your Bulldog can try. Skateboarding is something your buddy can enjoy with some practice. It may seem very funny, but that could be very impressive to teach your dog to skateboard. Even if Bulldogs aren’t the easiest dog breed to train, you could also try to teach them funny and simple tricks!

Bulldog Skateboarding

There are way more activities to exercise your dog properly. The most important thing is to find something you and your companion will enjoy. Make sure you respect your dog’s conditions, and everything will be alright!

4 Tips To Consider Before Running With Your Bulldog!

Before you bring your buddy on the trails, there are some things you need to know! Let me share with you some essential safety tips to start running with your companion!

Start Slow!

Make sure to don’t start directly with intense runs. Preparation is the key to run safely with your dog. You should also master dog walking before introducing your partner to jogging. Starting running the right way is decisive to exercise your Bulldog safely!

Take Breaks!

Regular breaks are very important, especially for low energy dogs. They will need water breaks, snack breaks and rest time. Make sure your dog is well hydrated before, during and after physical activity. Drinking 0.5 to 1 oz (14 to 28 ml) of water per pound daily is recommended for dogs. Water can only relieve a little bit s if your dog overheats, so don’t exercise too much during hot days!

Pay Attention to Your Bulldog!

My last safety advice is to look at your dog. Many runners have earphones and never take a look at their furry jogging companion. Don’t be that dog owner, it can be very bad and dangerous for your Bulldog. If your buddy needs something, you will be able to see it on his face and by his attitude. Always pay attention to your dog while exercising or you won’t be able to give him breaks, water or stop when he needs it!

Enjoy Your Runs!

Running With Dog

This is also important for your happiness. Too many dog owners don’t enjoy their daily walks or regular runs. Even if this activity can be tough to start, you can always put a smile on your face. That joy of living can improve your dog’s happiness and makes this activity more fun! (AKC has other running tips for dog owners!)

Last Thoughts About Running With Bulldogs!

In conclusion, Bulldogs can run if you adapt this sport for their conditions. Short brisk walks or jogs are the only type of running they are suitable for. Not every dog will be able to run with you. Give them the time to get more fit and never push them too hard!

You must wait until your Bulldog is more than 12 months of age before serious exercising. Walking with your buddy is a great way to prepare him for running. Don’t forget that you shouldn’t jog when it is over 70°F (21°C) or under 47°F (7°C)!

Thank You For Your Attention!

I hope this article helps you to understand if you can take your Bulldog running. Take note that my opinion is purely personal, I’m not a professional in this domain. A consultation with the veterinarian is always the best solution to answer your question. I just really want to help dog owners to be more active with their dog!

Bulldog On Leash

If running isn’t for your dog, there are other lower activities to try with your companion. I wish you to have as much fun as my dog and me while running or enjoying any other activity!