There’s no such thing as better indoor dog breeds, only devoted pet parents ready to make up for the lack of outdoor space. Whether small, family-inclined, or large and energetic, every dog needs to meet their daily exercise requirements to stay healthy and happy.
A dog treadmill can be a perfect middle-ground for busy owners who can’t always find time and energy for the long walks and high-pace workouts their furry friend needs.
Since they come in different sizes, quality, and features (and are quite an investment), choosing the right product requires some research into the best machines out there. With 13 years of experience, our experts have composed a useful info-packed review of the 6 best dog treadmills to help you focus on your dog’s requirements, price range, and lifestyle limits.
Why should I opt for a dog treadmill?
Apart from the obvious “not-having-to-leave-your-house” reasons, putting your dog on a treadmill can make both the pet’s life and your life easier in many ways.
Less time consuming
If it’s not potty break time, but you want to avoid the zoomies around the house, you can utilize a treadmill. Multi-tasking is also possible, as you can catch up with work or house chores while your furry companion is having a lifetime on his new gadget. Some thirty-minute quality time on a treadmill will keep your dog calmer, satisfied, and ready to snooze for the afternoon.
Eliminates weather constraints
If your pooch suffers from severe seasonal allergies, keeping her inside as much as possible can help in soothing the symptoms. Scorching summer days or freezing snowstorms in winter can also limit the comfort and convenience of time spent in nature. A dog treadmill can help you live through the outdoor dangers without compromising your dog’s exercise needs.
More convenient and adaptable
The pandemic restrictions haven’t skipped our pets as their walking schedule had to change significantly. A dog treadmill enables you to provide your dog with the atmosphere and feel of walking without having to actually go outside. From slow-pace walking to high-stamina running, the treadmill can be a lifesaver for the lockdown days.
Helpful for owners with physical limitations
Some health conditions and physical limitations don’t allow dog enthusiasts to fully enjoy the quality time spent with their dogs. A dog treadmill can be of great aid as it will enable disabled individuals to keep a pet and not always ask for external help. In the long run, it’s cheaper than a dog walker’s service, plus you get the chance to actually be together with your dog.
Safer for older dogs
Getting older brings a lot of safety issues for dogs, such as loss of hearing and sight, joint problems, and chronic indigestion. Dog treadmills come with a variety of features that enable you to create a perfect fitness program for your grandpa dog to meet his daily exercise needs without getting exhausted or hurt.
Changing weather conditions can also be an issue for sensitive canine oldies, which is another reason why treadmills are a safer option.
Great for beginner trainees
While nature walks and workouts can’t always be replaced with walking in the same spot, they can certainly come with a bunch of distractions. When trying to teach your dog new commands or tricks, outside noises, smells, new sights, and the changing environment can undoubtedly slow down the process and make it all too frustrating.
You can work on obedience training from the comfort of your own home and keep your dog focused and under control more easily. Different incline levels and pace programs allow you to organize the training session the way you want and need it.
Can’t I just put the dog on my treadmill?
As witty as it may sound, using a human treadmill on your dog is not a good idea for several reasons.
While a dog treadmill has the same purpose as the one for people, the machines are designed to adhere to dogs and humans’ different anatomical needs.
Imagine getting down on all fours on your treadmill, would you be safe? The same goes for your four-legged friend, as the human treadmills can never guarantee complete safety for your pet.
The key features include the motor position, which, by no means, should be positioned to accidentally pull your dog’s fur. Secondly, dog-purposed treadmills are much quieter and with a wider and long-enough tread to withstand the dog’s sudden movement and occasional fidgeting.
To prevent falling or losing balance, dog treadmills have side panels (usually detachable) that keep the dog focused on the tread. Last but not least, the designed programs are much more applicable for dogs than ones for humans since some injured or aging dogs, or even puppies can’t safely use the human treadmill, even on the lowest speed setting.
What should I consider when getting a dog treadmill?
To make a good bargain, several factors need to be taken into account before making a purchase. Here’s what our experts advise you to focus on:
The dog’s size and breed
A Chihuahua owner doesn’t need to buy the same treadmill as the Great Dane owner. Your dog’s size can significantly narrow down the choices of the exercise machines to opt for, which will also round up the price range and size options for your space.
Smaller dog breeds weigh much less, they run slower, and their step length is limited. This will determine the thread length and width, as well as the number of additional features you may need.
Although they vary in size and weight, treadmills are not unnoticeable and require space for storing. Where are you going to keep the machine? Does the treadmill need to be portable and foldable? Will you keep it assembled all the time, or will you store it away when not used? All of these questions should be answered before making the final choice.
This factor is essential, depending on your dog’s size and breed. Higher incline means more effort needs to be put in exercise, a necessary part of weight loss. Furthermore, if you own a small dog, the treadmill should be flat enough for the dog to walk comfortably.
Dog’s are more sensitive to noise than humans, some breeds even more than others. If your furbaby is easily startled by loud noises, vibration, or clicking, you’ll have a hard time aquainting your dog with the treadmill. Noisier motors can make the dog bark and get too distracted to step on the treadmill. Make sure to choose quieter and more sturdy treadmills to adhere to your dog’s needs.
Deciding whether you do or not need extra features on your dog treadmill can determine the price range options. If your dog easily adapts to new things and is well-trained, you probably won’t get much use of the additional options. On the other hand, if you know your pet will find the treadmill intimidating, getting the one with an in-built treat dispenser, for example, can help your dog more easily take to it.
Warranty options depend on the product policy, but knowing you can return a product or pay in installments can definitely help with the options, especially if you want the more high-end machines. Sometimes you just can’t be sure whether your dog will take a liking to the treadmill or discard it completely, so a money-back guarantee option is a smart option to look for.
Best dog treadmills for 2020
Based on the customer’s reviews and experience-based opinion, these 6 fantastic dog treadmills came up as the top options, taking into account the quality, size, price range, and performance.
Dog treadmill for large breeds: DogPACER
- Brand: dogPACER
- Model: DP-LF31
- Size: 76.8 x 27.6 x 47 inches, 97 pounds weight
This sporty-looking exercise machine can withhold up to 180 pounds of weight, making it a great option for bigger dogs. Despite its sturdiness and high endurance, this treadmill is lightweight (97 pounds), foldable, and easily stored away if needed.
It comes with removable side panels, specifically designed to keep your dog safe but not distracted. Pre-set programs cover workouts from easy to more advanced, while you can also create your own program.
Customers reviewed this machine as very sturdy and intuitive to use, dogs quickly get used to its shape and size and are fond of using it. While it has a powerful 1.5-hp motor, it is almost soundless, with mild humming. All in all, an excellent treadmill for active and medium-sized to large dogs.
- Foldable and easily stored
- Great for larger dogs
- Strong, but quiet-operating motor
- Pre-set programs and the possibility of adapting them
Best Dog treadmill: DogTread Premium
- Brand: DogTread
- Model: PZ-1701r
- Size: 44 x 20 x 21 inches, 47 pounds weight
Although reviewed as a bit pricey for its value, this sturdy exercise machine can keep your small-breed dog or a puppy happy and satisfied for a long time. DogTread’s treadmill for small dogs comes with a surprisingly wide running area ( around 30 by 14 inches) compared to its total size.
With a space-saving portable design, this treadmill is very compact and easily stored away, basically anywhere. A uniquely-designed low running platform enables any small and short-legged dog to run or walk safely and comfortably.
You can use one of the ready-made workouts, or create your own, as it comes with adaptable distance, speed, and time. It comes with an intuitive LCD console and a remote controller for more convenient and high-quality workouts.
- Portable and light-weight
- Comes with a remote controller
- Designed for small dogs and puppies ( maximum weight capacity: 30 pounds)
- Pre-set programs
- Removable side panels
Go Pet Petrun Pr700 Dog Treadmill
- Brand: GoPet
- Model: PR700
- Size: 15 x 81 x 50 inches, 81 pounds weight
Another amazing option for smaller dogs is this GoPet’s nifty treadmill, with a maximum weight capacity of 44 pounds. Although not actually foldable, its design and shape allow it to be stored easily, as it is low and flat enough to put under the bed.
The low running platform allows your dog to jump on it safely and effortlessly, while the emergency stop button enables safe and controlled runs. It contains a silent driving system that enables quiet operation, from o.6 – 7.4 mph, perfect for aging dogs or clumsy puppies.
Furthermore, you can remotely monitor your pooch’s workout program with a remote controller and maintain safety.
- Maximum weight capacity: 44 pounds
- Remote control
- Silent driving system
- Emergency safety stop
- Good price for value
GOPET PetRun PR720F Dog Treadmill
- Brand: GoPet
- Model: PR720F
- Size: 15 x 123 x 74 inches, 123 pounds weight
This sturdy treadmill upholds dogs up to 132 pounds. With the running area of 52 x 16, it’s an optimal option for almost all dog sizes, as it contains a low platform but is sturdy enough for larger breeds. It also comes with the emergency safety stop option and adaptable speed and time options.
Customers review this product as a good investment for energetic pooches. It is also very quiet and doesn’t scare the dogs, making it a top-rated product for those with a limited budget.
The set-up is easy and intuitive while the machine is foldable. Compared to similar products, it’s less bulky and much more space-saving.
- Very diverse
- Quiet operation
- Remote or manual control
GoPet Treadmill PR725
- Brand: GoPet
- Model: PR725
- Size: 90 x 26 x 22 inches, 137 pounds weight
If your four-legged friend is tireless, this GoPet treadmill may just be the product for your household. It withstands up to 175 pounds but is specially designed for more intense and structured runs.
With multiple incline levels, this treadmill can also be well utilized for overweight dogs in need of cardio workouts. From casual low-pace walks to sprinted runs (to a whopping 10 mph), this machine provides a variety of options for different exercise levels.
It comes with a nifty dog leash bar that allows a full outdoor run experience. Barred side panels are sturdy enough to ensure safety during more intense runs, but are not claustrophobic like the plastic ones that come with similar products. Although on a more high-end scale, this machine is an excellent value for its price.
- For larger breeds
- Suitable for more intense workouts
- Comes with a leash bar
- Sturdy and of good quality
DogPACER Minipacer Treadmill
- Brand: dogPACER
- Model: Minipacer
- Size: 42 x 21.5 x 28.5 inches, 48 pounds weight
This futuristic-looking gadget may have all in one. Adjustable speed from 0.5 to 7.5 mph makes it a great machine for both casual walks and intense sprints. Both reliable and economical, the dogPACER treadmill comes with multiple pre-set workouts, as well as the option to make your own fitness program just for your pooch.
Although you should never leave your dog unsupervised on exercise equipment, this intuitive machine basically does the job on its own. The safety side panels are anatomically designed to keep your dog safe while not driving their attention off the tread.
It’s best utilized for small to medium-sized dogs as it holds up to 55 pounds. The completely collapsible and portable design makes it a space-saving, practical device. Customers have noticed its exceptional quality, endurance, and intuitive assembly instructions.
- Collapsible and portable
- Extremely affordable
- Adjustable speed and time
- Computer fitness programs
- Small to medium-sized dogs
Final thoughts: Which treadmill to opt for?
It’s safe to say that there isn’t only one treadmill perfect for all dogs.
If you’re looking for an affordable but good-quality treadmill, the dogPACER Minipacer is a good choice for the long run. That said, if you own a large energetic dog, then you will probably need to invest a bit more to get a durable exercise machine that will pay off.
Space-saving treadmills like the GoPet Pr700 are perfect for small apartments and may just be the option for tiny dogs.
It all boils down to your preferences, price range, your dog’s exercise needs, space requirements, and many other factors enter the game. In order to make the best option for YOUR dog, consider all the tips mentioned above and think realistically.