Make sure your dog can handle the run
It should go without saying that dogs, like humans, need to be strong and healthy before starting an exercise regimen. For that, it's always a good idea to consult a veterinarian about any existing conditions your dog may have - like arthritis or a heart murmur.
Know if your dog is naturally built for it
The truth is, some dogs are built to run. Others, not so much.
McGuire hears people telling themselves otherwise all the time. Every pug owner, it seems, thinks their dog was trained by Usain Bolt.
"Someone will come out and say, 'My pug is the best running dog ever,'" she says. "Which is fine, but I think most often, your large-breed dog - Labradors, shepherds, pointers - make more effective running dogs."