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Mimmi Kotka in white shirt and with red shoes running on a single trail with dog
Trail Dogs of Run the Alps

Trail Dogs of Run the Alps

Apr 6, 2023

Because we can all use a minute to make us smile today, let’s look at photos of dogs. 

Specifically, dogs who trail run. (Now you’re smiling even more, right?)

These aren’t just any trail running dogs, though. These are dogs that trail run through the Alps, and are the four-legged companions of Run the Alps staff, guides, and friends. 

And we love dogs so much, we even have an entire trip built around them in summer 2024:

Trails and Tails.

We hope you enjoy meeting some of our favorite four-legged friends. (And if you are headed to the Alps, toss a few treats in your trail running vest, in case you cross paths!)

trail running dog Izzy
(Photo: Toni Spasenoski)


(Full name: Isabella Randolph Mayer des Aiguilles Rouges)

Breed: Labradoodle

Hometown: Montroc, France

Human Companion: Doug Mayer

Izzy Mayer is the Director of Hospitality and the Ambassador of Joy for Run the Alps. She loves to run so much that sometimes in the middle of a run, she will get a severe case of the “zoomies” and run crazily in circles. In her downtime, she likes to jump up on the sofa and put her head on your legs, falling sound asleep… which made her a dream pandemic dog and also likely ranks her high on the list for the title “World’s Most Endearing Dog.” She is scared but curious about: cows, ibex, chamois, and weird-shaped rocks alongside the trail. 

You can read her full bio here. Fun fact: she is a film star.

trail running puppy Bari
(Photo: Jack Geldard)


Breed: Spanish mixed-breed stray 

Hometown: Servoz, France

Human Companions: Emily and Jack Geldard

Now just a few months old, Bari is showing great promise for trail running, thanks to her speed and agility. She prefers being in the house to adventuring outside, but she’s still adapting after living in a barn for the first three months of her life, so it’s the early days of her trail training! 

trail running dogs Max
(Photo: Edwin Verdurmen)


Breed: Mini Pointer (a mix of pointer and something else)

Hometown: Stalden, Switzerland close to Zermatt 

Human Companion: Siebrig Scheeres

Max the trail dog
(Photo: Siebrig Scheeres)

Max is originally from Cyprus. Siebrig adopted him when he was three years old. Although he came from a warm island, he loves mountains and snow and has turned into a real mountain dog. He’s even climbed two 4000-meter Alpine peaks, the Allalin and Breithorn. He joins Siebrig for running, skiing, cross country, and sometimes easy alpine climbing.

trail running dog Piglet
(Photo: Georgie Fitzgerald)


(Fancy name Brynarws Golden Boy)

Breed: Working Cocker Spaniel

Hometown: Gervais Les Bains, France

Human Companions: Georgie and Dan Fitzgerald

Piglet’s still pretty young so he hasn’t been trail running for very long. He loves being outside, going FAST, and his squeaky penguin toy called Dave. He doesn’t care to run outside in the winter much, because snow balls up between his toes. Fun fact: Piglet hates baths.

He can often be seen standing on the balcony watching the world go by with a judgmental expression. Passers-by sometimes stop to wave or take his picture.

Piglet is currently helping Georgie rediscover her love of trail running, which she lost during the pandemic. One of his life highlights was making a guest appearance in the film Izzy: Ambassador of Joy

Obi the trail running dog
(Photo: Suze Walker)


Breed: Vizsla (also known as a velcro dog because they stick to you like glue)

Hometown: Chamonix, France

Human Companion: Suze Walker 

Suze thinks Obi is perhaps the best athlete in Chamonix. It’s never a problem for him to keep up trail running, or even while her human friends are on bikes or skis! 

Obi has sprinted down glaciers and charged headfirst down steep, snowy couloirs without batting an eye. His biggest fears? Ladybirds and cardboard boxes. 

trail dog Orsa
(Photo: Piedra)


Breed: Lagotto

Hometown: Geneva, Switzerland and Chamonix, France

Human Companion: Piedra 

Orsa often thinks she’s a human. She likes to sit on chairs at the bar, she wants your full attention when she’s on the sofa and she always tries to ride shotgun on car trips. 

Orsa becomes most dog-like when she is out on the trails, digging for (sadly, non-existent)  truffles in the mud and chasing her BFF Keith around the woods. 

Fun fact: She’s run the Tour du Mont-Blanc in four days. 

Special Mention:
Welly trail puppy
(Photos: Steph Lefferts)
trail dog Welly in Utah

Welly Ritter Ambrose

Breed:  Wirehaired Dachshund

Hometown: Ogden, Utah, USA

Human Companions: Mike Ambrose and Steph Lefferts

Welly is eight months old now and while he probably won’t make it to the Alps, his breed is actually fantastic in the mountains and will surely explore the trails in the US. He loves to smell everything, is an excellent tracker, wants to play in the snow constantly, and is a joy to watch as he discovers the world around him. 

Welly is incredibly fast, quite stubborn, and a huge cuddler. 

Your Trail Dogs

Because we can’t get enough, we’d love to see your favorite four-legged running friend. Post your trail running dog pics and tag us @runthealps on Instagram and Facebook.

Doug Mayer
Doug Mayer is the founder of Run the Alps and lives in Chamonix, France with his labradoodle, Izzy. He is the author of The Race that Changed Running: The Inside Story of UTMB and writes for Outside Online and Ultrasignup News. His upcoming book is a graphic novel about Italy’s 330km long Tor des Géants trail race.