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Training dog to run alongside bike

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Training dog to run alongside bike

Old 04-08-07, 12:26 PM
  #26  
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One evening while taking a walk, a man rode toward us on his bike. His dog walked along side on a leash. When we got within eyesight of the dog, the dog charged us. We did NOTHING to provoke the dog, other than to be within eyesight of the dog. The man had to pull back hard on the leash while we backed way off. My husband and I both thought "What an idiot" to ride around the neighborhood that way with a dog that was obviously not able to handle strangers. What if the dog pulled him down into the path of a car???
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Old 04-09-07, 12:45 PM
  #27  
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BIG MISTAKE. When I was about 15, I had the bright idea of riding my road bike on a bike path(not even a road) with my dog on a leash. Well, as luck would have it, with the dog on my left, a squirrel appeared on the right. My dog crossed my path. I ran over my dog. I did an endo and ended up with a tacoed wheel and lost skin on my legs and elbow.

The dog was essentially fine. My bike and my skin didn't fare so well. Then I had to drag my bike back home several miles with aching knees and elbows with my dog on a leash. This was the first and last time I ever tried that.

My dog was also very well trained and knew how to heel. This same dog also knew the boundry of our property and would never enter the street even if in pursuit of a squirrel or rabbit.



This is a bad, bad, idea.
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Old 04-09-07, 01:39 PM
  #28  
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I depends on the dog, usually the breed, to whether or not they are trainable to run along side your bike. When I was a kid, I used to run my Lab every day for a few miles while on my bike. In today's world, you must have your dog leashed by law in many cities. Too many people breed and buy dogs that are aggressive and not people friendly (to put it mildly)...plus some of those dog owner let their dogs run free. Not a good thing to have their dog attack your dog or yourself. It's gotten to a point where I only walk my dog when we go shopping or to the beach. Only when we go up to the farm is there any piece of mind to walk or run my dog and let her explore and chase squirrels plus learn from the other dogs on how to retrieve game.

There are dog/pet trailers available, it's just finding one that big enough for your dog to lay down comfortably, allows them move around a bit, good ventilation and windows for them to look out, and room for a water dish or water bottle holder. If you have a miniature dog breed, carrying them in your front basket or buying one of those handlebar pet carrier bags is an option. If one has the time, you could probably make a dog trailer. The only thing you really need to buy is the pole and hitch/attachment to your bike and maybe the wheels. The rest can be made/welded/sewn together from commonly available materials. Can even add springs and shocks to the cart/carrier from old car parts.
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Old 09-06-07, 05:52 AM
  #29  
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I have (2) mutts that I ride with, brother and sister, they are lab hound mix. I ride 6 miles with them on an old closed down dirt road. The Boy (Butch) is 65 pounds and lean. The girl (Baxter) is 50 pounds and not so lean at all. At mile (2) Baxter is at my side due to the fact that she is to tired to run threw the woods. At mile (6) Butch is still racing me at 25 - 30 MPH and running through the woods. I tried a leash on my local dirt road and it is not easy. I put harnesses on them and tied them to the front of the frame. they pull for about 1/2 a mile without getting tangled. I was thinking of trying to make some kind of lightweight yoke.

They start going crazy with excitement when they see me pull out the bike
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Old 09-06-07, 07:16 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by cruzMOKS View Post

I was wondering if a dog could be trained to ride in the rickshaw pulled behind the bike? I might take her on the Missouri Katy Trail for a bike camping trip.
Yes. Use a leash or a harness to make it impossible for the dog to jump out after something exciting like a squrriel etc. Make sure there is plenty of ventilation in the heat. Depending on the dog it can get too hot.
A child trailer works fine.
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Old 09-06-07, 08:43 AM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by cruzMOKS View Post
I run my black lab (while I'm on my bike) about 5 blocks to a park. Where we take a break and she catches her breath. Then we ride back. It's not a busy road even during rush hour. But I'm taking a chance doing it. She is a smart dog and is aware of traffic, but sometimes there is too much stimuli for her to be safe.

I was wondering if a dog could be trained to ride in the rickshaw pulled behind the bike? I might take her on the Missouri Katy Trail for a bike camping trip.
Training a dog to stay in a trailer would be pretty easy.

You can train the dog to go it's "place", i.e. it's dog bed.

Once it consistently goes to its place, then staart putting it's place in the trailer.

Haven't put our Lab in a trailer, but she does fine in the kayak.
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Old 09-06-07, 10:47 AM
  #32  
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I take my dogs in the kayak too.
they love it (1 at a time or two kayaks)
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Old 09-09-07, 08:11 AM
  #33  
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If you are on your own land or a rural area with no cars, people, or other dogs, you could ride along and not worry about the dog. But running along a well traveled road with a dog off leash is an accident waiting to happen.
I roadwork my dogs with a springer attachement on the bike; there are a few devices available to attach your dog to the bike while you keep both hands on the handlebars. The springer is one, somethiing called a "walkydog" is another- it looks like it would stick out less and can be detached quickly to use as a leash.
There is also a sport called "bikejoring" where the dog or dogs are hooked to the front of the bike with sledding or skijoring harnesses and can actually pull you along, and trained with sledding commands.
I usually go 3-4 miles with mine, but you could go much further if your dog were conditioned to it- I believe dalmations actually have a "road test" event where they travel much longer distances, check breed club information for details.
I hate running into unleashed dogs. Many of us carry pepper spray or a stick if we are walking our dogs on leash and get accosted by unleashed dogs. Whatever you are doing, have your dog on a leash if you might run into other people and dogs.
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Old 09-09-07, 09:07 AM
  #34  
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I also wouldn't walk my dog unleashed. But, she loves going on bike rides with me. She gets really excited when she sees the bike and leash. I walk her to the nearby park, about 2 blocks away, once there, I take her off the leash. After a couple of warm up laps, I start to go faster so that she can run.
After the run, I usually put her back on the leash and we go for about a 2 mile ride at a slow speed. The speed is about a trot for her.

This took a lot of training, but I now have her trained to stay at my back wheel on the right side. She knows "left" and "right" for when we turn, "slow down" and "stop". I have also trained her not to go after squirrels. She is very well behaved with the bike, but I still wouldn't allow her to go unleashed when on the roads.

As for water, I had an old soft sided cooler that had a bottom section. I cut the bottom section off. It works great. It holds a little over a water bottle amount. I fill her bottle up and place it in the cooler section. It is a tight fit, but I can get it into the bottle cage. I stop to allow her to go potty and drink when I think she needs it.

Walking a dog on a bike is great. I have arthritis in my knees and it is painful to go for a couple of miles of walking, but I can ride a bike all day. Also, with the speed, she gets a much better workout.
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Old 09-11-07, 12:42 AM
  #35  
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I have been running my dogs with both bicycles and horses for years. Have had very few problems. I always keep the dog on a leash, on the right and even with my pedal. Hold the leash between your hand and the handle bar, never never wrap it around your hand. Had a Saluki at one time, he could out run me, only way to exercise a high energy dog.
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Old 09-11-07, 03:10 AM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by ad6mj View Post
I wouldn't recommend unleashed. Most areas have leash laws and you will have a time when you want to stop the dog from going after something.
+1000

So, let me get it straight. We have 2-3 posts a month about an unleashed dog chasing a cyclist. Every time the owners say that "my dog won't bite." Now, we have one of our own proposing that he let his "well trained" dog run loose amongst other cyclists off lead.

Anyone else see a problem here? Any dog with a high "prey drive" allowed to run off lead is an accident waiting to happen. A Dalmation is a strong dog. I hope your homeowners insurance is paid up. Also check to see if there is a dog bite exclusion on the policy.

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Old 09-13-07, 10:25 PM
  #37  
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I live in an area that was very rural until about five years ago, when some of the old ranches got subdivided. In those days I rode my mountain bike often, on and off road but mostly off, with our lab-sized mongrel alongside. He could go 20 miles as fast as I wanted to ride on soft tires, and didn't seem tired when we got home. He'd rest for an hour and be ready to go again.
In those conditions, though, he didn't have to stay particularly close because there was so little traffic. He'd range 50 yards ahead or hang back to investigate something and catch up. It would have been hard to train him to stay close, probably not worth the trouble and the risk to him now that we have more traffic.
If you decide to try it, though (I'm confident it can be done; I just don't want to do it), I second the recommendation to start with a basic obedience school. You'll both learn things, and some of them will transfer to anything else you want to teach him.
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Old 09-13-07, 11:35 PM
  #38  
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I am just wondering if the dog that at the start of all this is still alive????

Incidentally, under the Australian Road rules, it is specifically prohibited to lead a dog (or in fact any animal) while riding a bike. Having the dog run along side off lead is also out as most local government areas only allow dogs to be off lead in certain designated areas.
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Old 09-17-07, 05:41 AM
  #39  
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Well, this summer I got a rottweiler/lab mix (she looks like a rottweiler but only weighs 55 pounds full grown) and after 2-3 obedience classes I tried her on the bike. We went very slowly and only went for a mile or so, but she was able to hang in there okay. I had a 4' leash tied under the seat of my bicycle and the first time we took off she tried to switch sides but I immediately stopped and had her return to the right. Since then she always stays on my right and I haven't yet had any issues with her yanking, trying to pull me off somewhere so she can chase something (she has a very low prey drive).

At the end of these mini-bike rides (by y'alls' standards) she was pooped, but it was also summer in the high heat and humidity of New Orleans. But July and August were too hot for anybody to be outside, much less running a dog around on a bike, so the rides stopped. But as soon as I get my bike back from its tuneup we're going to start up again now that the weather is cooling off.
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Old 11-18-07, 10:33 PM
  #40  
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I ran my dogs (not at the same time) at about 3/4 speed, almost a run but faster than a trot when I ride. Something about that middle speed makes them shift from whatever state they are in to a migrating frame of mind. We did this six miles a day (I'd ride to my parents house with a kid on another bike and me and the dog of the day together) and my dog never had a problem lunging or getting frisky with another dog. BTW - until my wife vetoed it, I am a bully breed fan - i owned Dobies and pitbulls and never had a problem with any.

My neighbor had a problem with my dogs because he had bad energy, and my dogs disliked it so they kept him out of our pack area (read house vicinity) but beyond that, strange kids would pet my dogs, and I could skate or ride with any of them and keep them safe.

Try to get rolling and get over the initial thrashabout. Once the dog settles, start going a little faster. Cesar Millan says that dogs have that instinctive mindset to want to move, so it should be ok once you get the dog through the initial fear-of-a-new-thing stage.
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Old 01-21-08, 01:47 PM
  #41  
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http://www.dogscooter.com

Take a look at this.
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Old 07-20-09, 07:28 PM
  #42  
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Dog Runner

I have been running my three dogs (one at a time) along side my bike for three months, about 5 nights a week, 1-7 miles depending on the breed. This has been the best thing for me and my dogs. We ride in a very low traffic area. They know the turns and the stops, they also have learned my commands of "over", "left turn", and "right turn. I started off slow, just going up and down one street and then we started going a lttle bit more everyday, now the Englsih Bulldog is running up to 1 mile a day (I know right...English bulldog is too fat to run, not this one and he loves it), my Bull Mastiff/Newfie Mix is up to running one mile and trotting one mile and my Border Collie mix is up to 7 miles + a day. They all just had their wellness checks and the vet was singing the praises of bike riding with my dogs. I found that if I just run pass the other dogs, my own dogs pay no attention to the other dogs. I think this is has been the best bonding expierence for all 4 of us. Try it!
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Old 09-05-09, 11:26 PM
  #43  
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Many years ago, we had a Sheltie when we were growing up. My younger brother was out riding around the neighborhood with the dog ruinning alongside. The dog's tail got caught in the chain and most of it needed to be amputated.
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Old 03-25-10, 11:45 AM
  #44  
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I run my dog (36kg rottie/ridgeback cross) on a 5 km loop. He gets pissy the days that we don't go for a ride. Easiest thing to do after you and puppy are comfortable. Here is my $.02 worth.....

1) use a leash
2) it is best to have a good handle on your dog before you try to transfer to the bike. I'm a firm believer in Ceaser Millan's Ideas and training ideas.
3) lower your seat so that you can touch the ground without shifting your bum off the seat to stop.
4) no looping the leash (or tying the leash off), as well keep it short.
5) bent arm to handle shocks and even head turns.
6) ONE HAND FOR THE BIKE ONE FOR THE DOG. Trying to steer and handle a dog with the same hand is a disaster waiting to happen.
7) Let the dog set the pace and distance.
8) Remember that you are out for the dogs benefit, not the other way around.


At the beginning of last spring I was bike running the Rottie, plus a 54kg Sheppard cross, PLUS a 68kg King Dobbie, ALL AT THE SAME TIME. The WORST of it was letting them figure out their running order.

I'll poke around my hard drive for pics or video.

Last edited by artimus; 03-25-10 at 11:51 AM. Reason: added content
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Old 03-25-10, 01:27 PM
  #45  
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I know this is an old topic, but I gotta chime in. Of course this is always going to depend on the dog and the rider. I am very comfortable on my bicycle. I ride a lot. My dog is not super trained or anything, but I take him around by bike because it lets us go places faster and he likes the exercise.

It works fine for me. My dad tried it and fell twice and was pretty angry, so YMMV.

I use about a 1.5 m leash that I loop over the seat post. I ride along at around 10 mph mostly, although he always starts off with a 20 mph sprint out the door. He stays on my right. He knows not to run in front of the bike, I don't know how, but I guess it's common dog sense. Sometimes he pulls to the side to sniff something or if he sees birds or squirrels. If I think he wants needs to go to the bathroom I will slow down and pull over, or if not I will pull back left. I don't have a lot of leash out so he can't jerk on the bike with momentum, just tug on the leash a bit. He seemed to automatically understand that walking into the bicycle would be bad, and he never gets too close to the wheels. I don't make sharp right turns towards him.

I have never been pulled off the bike by him. Frankly, I don't see how it is possible. He is 50 lbs, but I have enough control of the bike that I can just lean the opposite way that he pulls, even if he sees a dropped slice of pizza that he really wants. The only accidents we've had is when first starting out he went to the wrong side of a telephone pole at low speed. The result was that I fell, and he probably got a bad pull on his collar, but now he is very careful to never go around the far side of any objects. He is also a little bit freaked whenever the bicycle moves around unpredictably, like if I am carrying it down the stairs.

We stick to quiet roads. If I ever have to pull into the middle (like for a right hand turn lane), I reach back to the leash and pull him closer to me so that he won't get run over by inattentive drivers passing on the right. I do the same if I think a parked car is going to pull out beside me.

Our longest ride was 10 miles, and he still wanted to run around the park after that. I don't know how I would get him the same amount of exercise without a bike.

Oh and here is a warning: Don't attach a leash to the handlebars, or attach a leash to your hand and hold on to the handlebars. I tried this the first time out and came very close to crashing.

Another alternative is to look at a bikejooring setup where the dog pulls you along. I think it would take more training though.
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Old 03-26-10, 03:12 PM
  #46  
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I take my 60lbs akita on rides multiple times a week. He wants to sprint for the first 5 minutes and then is ready to trot at a slow pace (5mph? or so). Some tips:

- Do not even think about taking your dog out for a ride unless he/she is calm and you are in complete control. If your dog yanks you around on walks or does not obey commands then do not think about getting on the bike. Work with an animal trainer until you can take your dog on walks without any problems. Some dogs will NEVER get to the point that running them with your bike is a safe option.
- You should have fairly strong bike skills (can you ride very slowly & turn, can you do this with one hand, etc.)
- As mentioned above, NEVER attach the leash to your bike. You should be able to toss the leash away in an emergency.
- Clipless pedals are nice but make walking an animal very difficult. I use clipless now but I would strongly recommend starting off with platform pedals. Your dog WILL stop unexpectedly (bathroom break, etc.) and you'll want to brake and put your feet down quickly.
- The dog should always be on your right (bike is between dog and traffic)
- Don't take your dog out on busy streets, stick to local roads
- Learn to recognize your dogs signs (getting tired, need a potty break, etc.)
- When your wheels are spinning, it will take a lot of force to tip the bike over. With a short leash you can control your dog fairly easily. At low speeds, your dog can yank you right over so have your dog-side foot out of the pedal just in case.
- If you coast, have your dog-side foot down (protects animal from rear wheel if he darts into the bike)
- Never let the dog get past the front wheel. First, it's a safety issue. Second, if he is 'leading' the run then he will feel that he is in charge and can stop & turn whenever he wishes.
- Be extremely aware of potential problems as you pedal along your route. Other dogs, animals, people, etc. can all be triggers. Since your dog is already running, he/she may already be excited / on the hunt. Get the animal's attention and learn to head off any problems before they occur. For certain situations, it may be best to stop and/or turn around.
- I like to keep a few loops of leash in my hand that I can let out or pull in to account for the dogs movement. For right hand turns, I keep a very short leash and give my dog very clear verbal and leash commands (you don't want the dog to go straight when you are turning!)
- Beware of storm grates & broken glass along the side of the road. My dog has problems walking across steel plates or manhole covers so we steer clear of them on our ride.
- Agree with the above poster that you are riding for your dog's exercise, not your own. My dog lasts about 20 minutes or so and then he really starts to drag.
- Bring water on longer rides. I have a "gulpy" that is a bottle & trough together that fits in a bottle cage.
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Old 03-26-10, 03:44 PM
  #47  
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^^^^what Greg says^^^^
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Old 03-27-10, 12:50 PM
  #48  
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I disagree about saying never to attach a leash to the bicycle. Some dogs/riders may have problems, but it is definitely not an absolute rule. It certainly is possible to loop your dogs leash over the seat post. It works very well for me. I can have more control over the dog with the leash attached to my seat and both hands on the handlebars than if I had one hand on the handlebars and one hand on the leash. I can even ride no hands for a short while if I need to zip up my jacket or something.
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Old 04-02-10, 11:16 AM
  #49  
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This is one of my passions...riding with my dogs. Whoever it was that said it's about the dog and not you was correct. It drives me crazy when I see someone riding thir bike with a dog and the dog looks ready to drop from exhaustion or heat stroke but has to keep running because they're leashed to the person/bike. But also, it's no good to have your dog off leash when there is any traffic around. You're risking way too much. And being a dog lover, if I were to run over someone's dog because it darted in front of me with no time to react, it would just about kill me!

* These rides should be slow where the dog is at a trot. Be sure to monitor your dog for signs of any physical stress and stop for a break when needed. As you continue to run your dog, you'll recognize the signs better and he'll likely be able to get faster but always let him set the pace so you know you're not pushing him too hard.

* Dogs drink a lot of water so bring plenty. Your dog will be working a lot harder than you will be...and in a fur coat.

* The 120 rule states that if the temperature and the humidity level adds up more than 120 you shouldn't run your dog. It's been above 120 here in the winter because of the high humidity so beaware of that as well.

* Know your dog. I have three dogs I bike with and each dog is so different. In order to avert disasters you have to know your dog's triggers (like cars in your instance). You know the trigger so before he is able to chase the car, redirect his attention or stop your movement if you can't redirect him and wait to go until it's safe again. But in order for that to work, you have to constantly be on the lookout for anything that might upset him/her.

* It's best to teach them commands for turning each direction, slow, stop, and wait for better control.

* If the concrete/asphalt is too hot to comfortably hold your hand on, it will be uncomfortable on your dog's paws and could even cause blisters and burns. They have dog booties that are designed to protect their feet. But chances are that if the surface is too hot then you're breaking the 120 rule anyway.

When I take Bear out, I know that we can't go more than 3/4 mile from the house because he wears out quickly. Tucker goes about 4 miles pretty easily and after a nap is ready for more. Jasmine is my long distance biking buddy because she's so well behaved. Jasmine knows to pace herself so I don't see the same speed out of her as I do the others. I took her on a bike/camping weekend trip last spring. I have a trailer I carry for her. She goes in when it gets too hot, when she needs a break or when I want to actually make some progress. We went 23 miles the first day. It was much warmer than expected so Jasmine was only out of the trailer for about 10 of those. She could have done the whole distance on foot...but it took a couple years to condition her for those distances. I would start with a mile or less and slowly work up to longer distances. Also, the distances you can cover will depend on the kind of dog you have. Bear runs super fast but runs out of steam before 2 miles is up. Jasmine is a slow and steady kind of dog and can last all day at her speed (with breaks, of course) and Tucker is in between them. So really, you just have to work with your dog and train with them. You'll learn your dog pretty well. I would suggest taking a trailer along for longer rides (more than 5 miles is my personal choice) though because if something should happen to your dog you want to be able to get him home.

It might also be a good idea to get the vet to check for hip displaysia on your full grown dog. Even if they have no problems currently, they can still see on an xray if they are prone to it. They may not suggest biking with a dog with hip displayis in their future. On the other hand, there are certain bone/muscular system defects that biking with them can actually help with, given they're not getting pushed too hard.

I use the same set up for all my dogs. I have a bungee leash from www.shockles.com. I attach that on the tube below my handlebar stem. The bungee cushions the pulling and gives me a chance to keep control even when surprised by a tug. I try to keep a loose leash and when it is a loose leah, it's impossible for them to get in front of the wheel. Also, don't use a leash. Find a well fitting harness and attach the line to that. I have different harnesses for running and biking and my dogs know the difference and it's amazing to see the different attitudes they take when one verses the other is put on.

Please keep your dog and you safe. If you do it right, you'll have years of great fun with your dog.

Tiff

Last edited by dogontour; 04-02-10 at 11:20 AM.
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Old 04-04-10, 11:43 AM
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IMO, this is potentially very bad for you and/or the dog.

Would you make your wife run beside you on a leash (vice versa)?
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