Biking With Your Dog

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TIPS

If your dog actually has the energy and stamina to trot along side of you as you bike, great! This is a perfect way to get exercise. Even if your dog appears to be in the best of health, you should have your veterinarian check your dog over before starting a new exercise routine like jogging -- which is essentially what this is. You will want to be sure that your dog doesn’t have any underlying conditions that could be worsened by strenuous exercise. Also, if your dog is overweight, jogging is usually not the best way to begin a new routine; it needs to be built up to with a regular walking routine first. Remember that long haired dogs, older dogs (over 4), and black dogs are more prone to heat exhaustion, which can be life threatening. The best time to bike or run or skate with your dog is early in the morning or late afternoon when the weather is cooler.

 

THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND

  • Make sure dog is at least 25 pounds (It could be unsafe to bike or skateboard with a smaller dog)
  • Wear reflective gear (So that you are clearly visible during the night time)
  • Use a harness (Collars can choke dogs)
  • Use bike attachments (So that your dog does not pull you off balance)
  • Be aware of sharp objects and hot concrete (Especially in the Summer)
  • Warm your dog up to the idea of biking (So that your dog does not get over-exerted)
    • Start with very short rides, then slowly make them longer
    • Use commands
  • Try to stay away from crowded areas with a lot of traffic (Dogs can get easily scared in these areas)
  • Grassy or areas with dirt are preferred (They won’t be as hot as concrete)
  • Give Plenty of water
  • Make sure your dog is next to you during your exercise (If they are falling behind, they are too exhausted)
  • Try not to exercise during the day in the Summer (it is too hot for the dogs)

 

ESSENTIAL EQUIPMENT

  • A non-tangling lead
  • A body harness (attaching the lead to only a neck collar could be dangerous;the lead to a fitted body harness instead)
  • brightly colored reflective vest for your dog (you may also apply reflective tape to your dog’s vest)
  • Blinking lights for your dog and bike (you can get a collar that has lights embedded in it, or use an attachable tag sized light)
  • A small first aid kit for little nicks that can occur
  • An extra lead for detaching your dog from the bike to do other things
  • Water bottles for you and your dog

 

WARNINGS

  • Stop immediately if your dog (these are all signs of exhaustion):
    • Looks tired
    • Pants and/or drools a lot
    • Loses coordination
  • Try to stay away from crowded areas with a lot of traffic (Dogs can get easily scared in these areas)
  • Grassy or areas with dirt are preferred (They won’t be as hot as concrete)
  • Give Plenty of water
  • Make sure your dog is next to you during your exercise (If they are falling behind, they are too exhausted)
  • Try not to exercise during the day in the Summer (it is too hot for the dogs)

 

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