13 of the Fastest Dog Breeds in the World


What are the fastest dog breeds?

It may seem that many dogs have some advantages over us two-legged humans when it comes to natural athleticism. They can jump high fences in a single bound, detect thousands of smells, and hear things we can’t. But figuring out which are the fastest dog breeds isn’t as simple as it appears. Some of the biggest dog breeds can reach incredible speeds (30 mph Great Dane, anyone?), and some of the best runners are also the most lazy dog breeds around. As we all know, running is great exercise for both humans and dogs, and going running with your dog can be a great way to bond together. Many people stay away from a high-energy dog when they’re looking for a pet, but if you’re committed to giving them (and you!) the exercise they need to be happy and healthy, dogs that love to run can be a fantastic addition to your family. Some dogs are definitely better suited to be running buddies than others, though, and it isn’t necessarily the fastest dogs that make the best jogging companions but the dogs with the best endurance.

How fast can a dog run?

In general, most dogs can run about 15 to 20 miles per hour for a short distance. Lean, long-legged dogs with deep chests (meaning big lungs) tend to be able to run the fastest, from 25 to 45 miles per hour. For dogs like sighthounds and collies, long strides and small mass keep them moving forward quickly. But small dog breeds with short legs like Shih Tzus or huge breeds like St. Bernards tend to be slower because of the former’s short gait and the latter’s mass. Other dogs have trouble running fast because they simply can’t breathe well enough to be that athletic. Those are brachycephalic, or flat-faced dogs with a short snout, like pugs, bulldogs, and Basset Hounds. If you love these squishy-faced pooches, getting an adorable pug mix can help even out their genetic issues. The dogs that can run the longest are the Alaskan Malamute and Siberian Husky. Both bred as sled dogs, they are strong, with plenty of stamina, and can maintain a good running pace of 10 to 15 mph for hours and hours.

Every dog benefits from exercise, of course, but it’s best to look at the shape and age of your dog (as well as the weather) to determine what sort of exercise they’ll enjoy and what will be right for them. Hiking, playing games, and romping with other dogs are all healthy ways for your dog to use up their energy!

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