Fall, one of my favorite seasons of the year. Training started back in August but he temperatures are finally dropping to where you can get some serious runs in. I don’t like to train the dogs when the combination of both the temp. and humidity add up to over 120. We start training when the temps are down into the low 50’s. The runs are three miles or less and the speeds are kept between 5 and 10 miles an hour.
I believe in building up the muscles before stretching them out. If you have hound crosses, as does some of our kennel, then I believe it is important to let them free run. By that I mean they are running where there is no tension on the tug lines. I allow a little free running on every training session or they get too muscle bound and have a tendency to pull tricepts when stepping in a hole in the snow at a full run. The same injury could happen if they try to dip snow off the side of the trail and sink in the deep fresh snow. So keep them stretched out!
It is so fun to watch the puppies that started training last spring, developing into real sled dogs right before your eyes. Some are even turning into lead dogs. It is like finding a diamond in the ruff.
We took the race team out this morning and we ran 20 miles. Everyone looked good coming in, except along the way I put booties on some pads that were starting to have wear spots. When I got back I put puple wound coat on the tender spots to seal them up. In a couple of days those pad will callis and toughen up. I will run booties on them until they are fully recovered and they will be tougher than before.
The fall colors are great and the cold weather is even better. Enjoy your training and be patient with those pups.