Sledding with dogs

 

Dog Sled Ride

 

Today, sledding with dogs is becoming more and more popular. Also, not only huskies are used for sledding. Many different breeds of dog are used for pulling sled, although many people presume and expect that only huskies are for that job.  Only if the dog is relatively large and fast, it will be able to pull a sled. By the way, dogs are not only for pulling the sled, they must be kept happy and well maintained and in high spirits! Why is this important? Because they won’t listen while pulling a sled, and if they don’t listen that can lead to causing a personal injury, either for the owner or for the dog.

Wa_husky4Necessary equipment.  As we already know, everybody has to start somewhere. You need to choose equipment that is suitable for your size and breed of dogs is essential.  The needed equipment includes: tug lines, harnesses, necklines, gang-lines and booties. A scooter is a good start for dogs. But if you live somewhere where is very cold with a lot of snow during the year, you should buy sled instead.  Do not forget – safety gear is necessary for you. It could happen that the first few tries can go terribly wrong. Sled, the scooter and personal safety gear won’t be needed initially, but it is worth of having it for future use.

Getting started.  You need to get your dogs to get used to wear harnesses and to have a level of drag behind them. You should attach a gang-line or a leash to the harness, and then let the end that would usually be held drag the length of it, behind the dog. You should attach something to it, and you should start small first, with a pair of shoes or something like that and add always something more over the period of a few weeks until you see that your dog is comfortable with pulling a lighter tire or something of similar weight.

6360_14751_Dog_Sledding_Vail_Colorado_mdAlso, you need to teach them the commands which you will use when you take them sledding. This will require a lot of patience because this is the most time consuming part of the training. To begin with something, takes them on the runs and walks with their drag attached, and show them the turns and moves. You could for example, shout ‘haw’ when turning left and ‘gee’ when turning right, and to make them stop use ‘whoa’. Step by step, you will have to move behind the dogs and make sure that they will to continue to react to these instructions during runs and walks, as the scooter or sled will always be behind the dogs. Once you see that they can run with the drag and respond to these instructions without looking at you, you will know that they are ready to pull scooter or a sled for the first time.

Pulling the scooter or sled. Make sure that you have all of your personal safety gear on – helmet, elbow pads and knee pads. To see if they will run and pull you along, hitch your dogs to the sled or the scooter. They can just turn and stare at you. The good way to get them to run can be a person to chase, either just running or on a bike. You need to make sure that the dogs do not run on them and the lines stay taut. You need to keep your hand or foot on the brake at all times. You need to make sure that you keep all dogs watered, well fed and happy with treats and praise when is needed, before you start with short sessions and slowly increase them.

 

How to teach your dog to pull a sled can be a great exercise to increase the bond between pets and owner, and outstanding way to put some of their strength and energy to good use with something they will enjoy.

Running with dogs

 

trail-running-w-dog

You should make your dog the perfect partner.  You don’t have a buddy to run with? You get bored on the long run and it is exhausting sometimes without friend to talk with it? Well, this is a great news. Try to run with your dog. He can be a great buddy while you are running. And you can never get bored. or you are just looking for a better running partner than your canine friend. Well, dog is never late, always keeps pace, doesn’t complain and bursts with excitement at the sight of your running shoes. Jogging or running with your dog comes with its own set of precautions and it is going to require a bit of knowledge to make sure that your dog is ready for the challenge.

Train Dog RunningHappy dog is a dog that exercises regularly. But it is essential to make sure that your pet is healthy enough for the rigors of the road. Take your dog to his regular veterinarian for a check-up, before you head out. Begin conditioning him for distance running, after you got the go-ahead from the doggie doctor. First you need to start with short jogs and fast daily walks. After some time you can increase the pace and distance as he becomes more conditioned to the activity.

It can be very helpful for your dog to know some basic commands before you begin to run frequently with your dog. Commands like ‘heel’ and ‘stop’ will help you to stay in control and that both of you are focused on the run. Also, hands-free leashes can be great thing for the experienced duo of the runner and the dog. Always keep your dog on a leash when running – do not take any chances. Make sure your dog has a reflective leash, if you like to run after dark. It will keep both of you safe from traffic and other nighttime dangers.

running-dogMake sure you pack enough water for the both of you, because your dog will need to stay hydrated, once you hit the pavement. It’s important to keep an eye on your dog during the run, because many breeds overheat easily, especially the excessively fluffy. Take regular breaks, and watch for signs of heat exhaustion such as thick saliva and bright red gums. If over-trained, dogs can get sore muscles and joints, just like human runners, so you need to be sure to give your dog a day off from your running routine.

After you are done with caution and care, a great bonding activity and a great way to keep you and your dog healthy and happy is to run with your dog.  So, get to work and get out those running shoes. Your new partner will be ready to go, there is no doubt. So, this could be a great activity for both of you, your dog and yourself. As you start, do not run a lot with your dog, increase the length every day for a little bit. You will see, it can be fun and you will feel better.