Do you long for your canine companion each time you go on a solo bike ride? If yes, you must have surely considered taking your dog along to enjoy your trips together! However, we are pretty sure that the next thought that comes to your mind each time you think about it is whether they will be safe or comfortable.
Is it safe to bike with pets? Yes, definitely – if you do it right. Here is a quick guide and a few dog biking tips to help you bike with your dog safely so that you never have to leave your buddy behind. Let’s dive right in!
Which dog breeds are best for riding?
It’s obviously extremely important to check if your dog is even suitable for riding in the pet bike basket. Make sure that your dog’s size and weight is within the basket's defined capacity.
In general, small and medium-size dogs with weight under 11 kg are perfect for riding in pet baskets. Riding with a large and heavy dog in the basket may cause damage to the basket and will make it difficult to maneuver your bike while also causing discomfort to your dog. Moreover, it could dangerously hamper your visibility while riding!
So here are the ideal small dog breeds that can ride in a pet basket safely:
- Yorkshire Terrier
Below are the best medium size dog breeds that can ride in a pet basket:
- Jack Russell Terrier
- French Bulldog
- Scottish Terrier
- Boston Terrier
Preparing For The Ride
Before going on possibly one of the best rides of your life with your fuzzy buddy, here are a few things to add to your checklist.
- Check your bike for faults
Your bicycle should be properly functional and have the provision of a bike basket for your dog. Faulty brakes, handlebars, or other damaged components can create a risk for both you and your dog! If you find any faults or damages, make sure that you fix them before going for your ride.
The right-sized basket and structure will give your dog enough space to be comfortable while keeping it from jumping out along the way. An even better option would be choosing enclosed baskets or open baskets with safety straps that act as a seat for your canine companion to keep them secure.
Ideally, small dogs can be strapped to the open seat-like baskets with cushions, while medium-size dogs may be accommodated in the seats without cushions or in enclosed baskets.
Also consider other requisite features such as a safety leash, padding for comfort, reflective lining, and a sturdy build. After all, they are a member of your family and we would obviously want them to be as comfortable and safe as possible during your scenic bike rides!
Follow the instructions that came with the bike pet basket and set it firmly on the handlebars. While rear baskets are available in the market, they are less secure and prevent you from keeping an eye on your dog. You surely wouldn’t want to turn your back on your fuzzy buddy!
Training your dog to stay in the basket
While you are excited to take your dog on fun rides with you, your dog may not share the same enthusiasm at first. The feeling of confinement is never great unless you understand and that’s why it’s important to make the pet familiar with the basket for them to get used to it!
So, the trick is properly introducing your dog to the idea of riding in a basket and slowly easing them into it. How? Keep scrolling to find out!
First of all, encourage your dog to sit in the basket while your cycle is stationary. Use treats and an encouraging tone to make your dog stay in the basket for short durations.
Once your dog is familiar with the static basket, put on the safety leash and start rolling the bicycle slowly while walking along with it. This would help your dog feel secure and keep him or her from trying to jump out. Also, make sure to reward your dog with treats after every short stroll.
Next, you may start riding the bicycle slowly on a smooth surface. Once your dog feels comfortable with that, you should gradually raise the speeds.
Now you can introduce small bumps and rises. Start slowly on rougher tracks and gradually raise the speed and elevation of the terrain. Remember to maintain a positive reinforcement with your dog’s favorite treats after every ride.
Once your dog sits calmly throughout the faster and bumpy rides, you can go for longer rides to get him or her fully prepared.
Now you can start going on long and fun rides regularly with your furry friend! After all, what’s better than always having your loyal companion by your side?
A few precautions
Here are a few points to take care of each time you go riding with your canine buddy.
- Always make sure that the basket is securely fixed and the harness is properly in place to ensure the safety of your dog.
- Always ensure that your dog is healthy and well hydrated before you hit the road!
- Remember to clean the dog basket after every ride to ensure your dog’s comfort and hygiene.
- Don’t keep your dog in the basket for too long and to help them flex their muscles, let them get some exercise at regular intervals.
- Make sure to keep going for rides as often as possible to keep your dog accustomed to it.
With the right pet bike basket, your dog will no longer miss out on the fun of your bike rides! You just need to make sure to carefully select a suitable basket type and train your dog gradually for riding in it. And that’s it! Go ahead and elevate your bike riding experience by taking your four-legged friend with you.