In a noisy city, not only people but also dogs suffer from hypodynamia. On a regular walking walk, the animal does not receive the physical activity that it needs by its nature, so cycling with a dog will be a good workout for muscles and ligaments for your furry friend. In order for such walks to be calm and safe, you should first prepare and train your dog to run next to a vehicle.
Stage 1: Preparing for cycling
Visit your veterinarian
Before starting training, you need to visit a veterinarian and make sure that your pet is in good physical shape, does not suffer from obesity, diseases of the musculoskeletal or cardiovascular system. Check with your doctor if this activity is appropriate for your dog.
- Cycling can be harmful to animals with a large body mass, heavy bones, or a short snout.
- Such loads are not recommended for dogs with very long hair, which makes it difficult to aerate and cool the body.
- Training should begin no earlier than from the age of eight months, when the pet has already formed a skeleton.
Prepare your equipment
Consider attaching your dog to your bike. For these purposes, there are special devices – bicycle springs, which are fastened to the seat.
- If such a device is not available, you can use a regular leash, attaching it to the seat or trunk on the right side – so that while riding the dog is between the bike and the side of the road. Some dog handlers advise not to tie the leash, but to hold it in your hands so as not to fall off the bike if the dog stops abruptly or decides to run after the cat.
- In addition, you should prepare a reflective vest for the dog, water for drinking and a small trailer or basket for transporting the pet – in case he gets tired of running after vehicles.
Stage 2: Train Your Dog to Bike
Pick a place to walk
Before you start walking your dog on a bike, you should find a suitable place for training. Preference should be given to a route with no obstacles, few pedestrians and other cyclists. The best soil is asphalt, grass or gravel. Avoid driving on concrete and sandy paths.
Introduce your dog to the bike
Many dogs are afraid of bicycles, so you should first introduce your pet to the vehicle.
- Bring the animal to it, let it smell, and praise it for good behavior.
- If your pet is worried, you should put the vehicle on the ground, and only then bring your furry friend to it. Reward him with affection, toys, or treats that he loves the most.
- When the dog becomes calm, you can raise the vehicle, trying to do this without jerking or sudden movements. If the animal still shows fear, you should lower the bike again and bring the pet to it. The main goal is to make the vehicle a comfortable zone for your friend. When the problem is solved, you can attach the leash and begin training.
Train your dog to move alongside
As you learn how to ride a bike with your dog, start your training with straight rides. For movement, you should select a flat section of the road with a length of at least 0.5 km.
- Command “Forward” (or “Bicycle!”) And start off, moving at minimum speed and rewarding your pet for running next to the bike. If it pulls forward too much, say “Hush” and slow down the vehicle. Adjust the animal’s attempts to move to the side with a leash, constantly commanding “Forward” and rewarding it for the successful completion of the task.
- As soon as the animal learns to move smoothly next to the vehicle, you can increase the pace of the trip.
- When the animal lags behind the two-wheeled vehicle, you need to pull it up with a leash, adjusting the required position next to it.
Practice stopping motion
The first stop is carried out after overcoming at least 0.3 km of the track. You can walk a longer distance so that the dog understands your basic requirement – to move next to vehicles.
- To train the animal to stop, give the “Stop” command. At the same time, slow down the bike slightly and do not remove your hand from the brake until the pet comes to a complete stop.
- After that, without getting off the seat, put your feet on the ground and praise the dog. Repeat the words “Stop, okay!” Give a treat. If the animal tries to move further on its own, adjust the leash so that your furry friend is standing next to the transport.
Teach your dog to move after stopping the bike
As you continue to learn how to bike train your dog, master the basic rules for moving on after a stop.
- To do this, sit on the seat, slightly release the leash – so that it does not interfere with the animal to continue its run, and then push off the ground with your foot and give the pet the command “Forward”.
- During your workout, you must combine trips and stops. The dog should enjoy the walk, but not get tired. At the same time, it is undesirable to restrain her run too much, since you can discourage the desire to run next to the bike.
- Having taught the animal to stop, you can proceed to learning how to turn left and right.
Practice the technique of turning to the left
Learning to turn begins with walking alongside your bike.
- Bring the dog to the transport and with a slightly taut leash, give the command “Left!”.
- Turn the steering wheel to the left with your left hand, and with your right hand, use the leash to pull the pet to the left. Make sure it follows the front wheel of the vehicle.
- If the animal obediently obeys the command, praise it with the words “Good”.
- Try not to make sudden movements – you should turn smoothly and slowly.
Teach your dog to turn right
Once you have learned how to ride a left-turn bike with your dog, start learning how to turn right. As in the first case, the animal must be near the vehicle (on the right side). Hold the bike with your left hand and take a slightly taut leash with your right hand.
- Lower your arm a little, bend at the elbow and command “Right!” Use the leash to guide your pet to the right. As soon as it starts to turn, turn the steering wheel to the right with your left hand.
- Reward your dog with the word “Good”. If she does not follow the command well, you can slightly push her with the wheel on the left shoulder. Try to do this very carefully so as not to injure or frighten the animal.
- When the turns on foot are well worked out, and the dog begins to perform them accurately, you can start working out them while driving at low speed.
Stage 3: Walking the dog on a bike
Watch the dog
Once you’ve figured out how to train your dog to run next to a bike, you can start walking on a regular basis.
- Try not to feed your pet before traveling. As a last resort, you can give some food a few hours before walking, and feed thoroughly only 20-30 minutes after returning home.
- Do not ride your dog in hot weather. Regardless of the weather, you need to monitor the condition of the pet, learning to recognize the signs of fatigue. If his breathing is difficult, his tongue hangs on his side, he lags behind the bike, then you must stop walking.
- Control the likelihood of heatstroke. Its main symptoms are uneven or fast heartbeat, excessive salivation, trembling, nausea, loss of consciousness, and the appearance of foam on the mouth. If you notice such manifestations, go with the dog in the shade, give a drink and dampen the body with cool water. Avoid watering the animal with too cold water – this can be dangerous to its health.
- Check the condition of the foot pads. Driving on asphalt or running at too high a speed can wear and be injured. It is recommended to use special dog shoes or stop every 2-3 km and check the paws.
Keep track of traffic
The speed and duration of the walk are selected individually. To develop your running skills next to your bike, do not forget to praise the animal and reward with a treat.
- Start with short rides, gradually building up the intensity. To begin with, it is enough to spend a few minutes walking. Do not let the dog go into a gallop – trotting is preferable.
- It is better to arrange small walks with the puppy, and from about 1.5 years old you can overcome 3-4 km, but not in the heat and with stops for rest. In any case, choose the distance and speed based on the characteristics of the pet.
Output. This kind of activity is good in every sense. If you patiently and gradually master riding a bike with a dog, then over time you can achieve excellent results and get joint pleasure from walking with your pet.