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Having a dog as a pet is great, but it can also be a little frustrating when you want to go for a bike ride and bring him along.
A visit to the park or your local bike trail often ends with you loading up the car so that your furry pal can come along.
Quality dog bike trailers give you the opportunity to take your dog with you while leaving the car in the garage where it belongs.
There are two wheels on pet bike trailers, as that makes them a good deal more stable. They generally come with reinforced sides and floors so that the trailer won’t tip over if you have an active dog in there.
Safety is always job one with these trailers, which means you can pedal to your heart’s content, safe in the knowledge that your pet is perfectly happy riding behind you.
Dogs have a definite pack mentality, which means that they want to be with you and the family at every opportunity.
A dog bike trailer allows you to bring the family pet along on trips that would normally begin with him being left at home or in a kennel.
A bike trailer for a pet is a great idea for those who love to hang out with their pets. If that’s you, then let’s look at a few things you should consider before you invest in a trailer.
7 things to consider when buying dog bike trailers in 2017
1. Size – It stands to reason that trailers would come in a variety of different sizes. After all, some dog breeds are small, while others are as big as your kids. Simply put, you will want to choose a trailer that is large enough to comfortably hold your pet.
It’s not likely that you dog will want to lay down for the duration of the ride, so go with a trailer that can comfortably hold him while he stands. He is not going to be a very happy or comfortable dog if he feels confined and can’t stand to stretch his legs when he feels like it.
Length is just as important as height when it comes to the comfort of your dog in the trailer. In order to be sure that he will have enough space, measure him from the chest to the back of the hindquarters, and then add a couple of inches in length when choosing the size of your trailer.
2. Cleaning: Dogs can make all kinds of unpleasant messes, so look for a trailer with floors and covers that can easily be removed and washed.
3. Reinforcement – You will want to choose a trailer that has been reinforced on the bottom and sides. Dogs have claws that can do some real damage if they start jumping around. Iy will also help prevent the side from pushing out and coming into contact with the wheels.
4. Conversion Options – You may think of a trailer that converts into a stroller as being something you would need for kids, but it can also come in handy for your pet. This is especially true if you are going somewhere that is busy, or where it is difficult to ride your bike.
5. Ease of Entry – This is especially important if you have an older dog who is not as spry as he used to be. In that case, look for a trailer with a larger entry port.
6. Kickstand – The trailer won’t always be hitched to your bike, so look for a kickstand that will keep it steady when your pup is getting in and out.
7. Divider – You will find that some trailers come with a pair of compartments inside. This is a great option if you have a pair of smaller dogs, or if you want some cargo space as well as a comfortable place for your dog to sit.
The BIG question: will your dog like the bike trailer?
We could easily turn around and say that your dog will fall in love with the trailer the first time he rides in it, but how would we now that. All dogs are different, and only you know how he might react to being in a trailer.
If you have a skittish dog, he may not take to it right away. The key is to not give up after the first failed attempt. Give him a chance to love the trailer.
One general rule of thumb here is that dogs who are active in a car are likely to be even more so in a trailer. Just something to keep in mind.
If you have an obedient dog, you probably won’t have any problem training him to like it. Dog’s love a little bit of an adventure, so once they see that getting in the trailer will take them on one, they will soon get into it.
You might start out by trying short little trips with him in there to begin with, just so that he gets used to the idea.
That first ride should be short and free from any real excitement. Don’t take you bike into busy areas or subject it to sudden stops. Trying taking a ride to a spot that you know he loves.
Bring along some little treats so that you can reward him when he acts on his best behavior in the trailer.
If he seems real nervous when you first get rolling, you may want to take the wheels off the trailer and get him used to the space first. Once he gets used to the idea, you’ll probably find that he will start to hop into the trailer as soon as he notices that you are about to take the bike out for a ride.
- If you have never used dog bike trailers before, don’t let your first time using it be the same as your dog’s first time. Take it for a few trips first so that you get used to how it steers and handles. Only when you can competently ride the bike with the trailer in tow should you start to think about loading up the dog.
- Make sure that the trailer you purchase has some sort of rear reflectors. This is because the reflectors on your bike will be blocked. A safety flag is another good addition to the trailer.
- Your dog may not act as expected the first few times out. Keep those first few trips short and sweet, as this will give you a good idea as to how he will handle riding in the trailer.
- While the most comfortable ride for your dog will be unharnessed with the trailer top down, do not do that. Always have him harnessed in and the trailer covered.