My dog (Scooter) and I love to workout together. My day wouldn’t be the same without my early morning bike ride with my dog, and I’m sure Scooter feels the same way. We’ve been cycling and running together for almost 3 years now BUT I’ve come to the realisation that there are 3 things I NEED to change when I bike with dog………
These are the changes that I need to make – your feedback would be most welcome!!
1. What do you do with the Dog Poo? I’ve been bought up with the attitude if the dog doesn’t do the business in front of someone or dumps away from a busy pedestrian route then let the bugs sort it out. As a DogBlogger I’ve began to think differently. There’s an excellent rundown on all the problems a ‘dog poo’ can cause at Sugar, the Golden Retriever’s site. I suggest you take the time and visit the link, particularly if you were like me and not totally convinced you had to pick up each deposit!!
Which brings me to my first dilemna. Picking up Dog Poo for me is no great drama. What is not so great is ‘transporting’ dog poo via a bike to a better dumping point. As you can see in the photos I’ve worked out a temporary spot to hang the ‘poo’ bag – trust me this is better than leaving it swinging from the handlebars. Problems can arise though if the knot isn’t so tight or if I hit an unexpected pot-hole (I’ll leave you to use your imagination on that one – particularly as the bag hovers quite close to my back tyre and my leg!!)
So my question is – How can I carry the dog poo safely, whilst off-roading on a mountainbike with the least amount of smell and inconvenience with respect to my bike riding efforts?
2. What is the best way to store all my dog gear whilst bike riding? So far I have strapped a bum bag (or fanny pack) to the handlebars of my bike and stored everything in there. As you can see in the photo my bum bag is definitely on its way out. I’m interested to see if I can find a better option than just buying a replacement. I like the convenience of a bag on my handlebars just so I can reach for things in record time. Poo bags, treats and my iPhone (which doubles as my camera) can be pulled out swiftly whilst I’m cycling along – this is how I get my best action shots with Scooter. I can cycle along, pull the iPhone out, snap a shot and put it back in record time (don’t try this at home kids).
I’ve looked at all the cycling saddlebags but most are too small to accommodate all my stuff (did I mention that I also shove the lead in there when my dog runs off-leash). Bags that are large enough are often placed in spots where its difficult to get stuff out whilst I’m cycling along. Plus, I don’t want anything too big and clunky as I am off-road for the majority of the time when I bike with dog.
So my next question is – Do I just buy a replacement bum bag or can anyone suggest an alternative that can be strapped on my bike for easy access whilst cycling?
3. What’s the best way to feed treats on the go? For the majority of time I bike with dog, Scooter runs off-leash. I’ve found that the quickest way to get my dog to return to me is to entice him with a treat and cycle real fast (a bit like a game of chase). As you can imagine, holding out a treat whilst cycling on a bike and having a dog’s jaw the size of Scooter’s clamping down on the goodies can sometimes end with nasty results.
I’m lucky that Scooter is very careful when he’s taking a treat from my hands but even my dog can slip up at times. Stopping and offering the treat doesn’t really work as half the attraction for Scooter is in the chase and reward. We’ve tried toys as an alternative but playing ‘tug’ whilst riding a bike is a scary option and throwing a ball doesn’t really work either.
So my final question is this – How can I successfully reward my dog for chasing me and staying close to the bike without always ending up with a hand full of slobber (and the occasional teeth mark)? It would be nice if I could keep my arm out of his throat on future rides.
Do you have any solutions or suggestions to my dilemnas? Have you tried to bike with your dog and had similar problems?
This post is also part of the Fit Dog Friday Blog hop brought to you by SlimDoggy and co-hosts Peggy’s Pet Place and To Dog With Love. Join the Hop or just enjoy the links below – lots of fun fitness tips and advice!.