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Bikejoring: An Exercised Dog Is a Good Dog

By Christopher Ashley

Do your dogs love to work? Do you love cycling? Could you do with a few extra watts? Then read on – Bikejoring is for you!

Scandi origins

Using dogs to power vehicles is nothing new and husky style work-breeds have been used to power sleds in snowy climates for hundreds of years. However, as people become more attached to their pets, a new sport called Skijoring emerged in Scandinavia.

You simply harness yourself to your dog, and go out skiing. As the dogs run ahead of you, they pull you along on your skis giving you all a healthy, exhilarating, and enjoyable work out. But what if it’s summer, and you haven’t seen snow for months? Simple – try it on your bike instead.

Harness the power

Companies like Snowpaw Store offer a range of harnesses to attach to your bike so your dogs can either pull from out the front of your bike or run alongside you.  The result is a combination perfect for dog loving cyclists – pack-time on the bike.

Is bikejoring right for you and your dog?

The more experienced you are at cycling and dog-training, the easier you’ll find it to combine your two passions.  Most importantly you must make sure it’s right for your dog. Before you even think about attaching a harness, get your canine-friend used to running around with a bike.

If you have a high energy breed and your dog is very well trained and obedient, bikejoring is certainly something you can consider. Dogs can sometimes have a mind of their own. Fortunately, this dog wasn’t harmed, but let it serve as a warning that you need to have a lot of patience when introducing your dog to a new routine.

The well-trodden path

Even if you’re confident your dog(s) fits these criteria, avoid busy streets and take them somewhere familiar that you know like the back of your hand. Ideally, you need to find a few well-known trails with few distractions or surprises where your pack will happily run in a predictable line.

Finally, make sure you’re carrying everything you normally would on a long ride or walk, including plenty of water and treats for both you and your dog. This will help keep hydration, energy, and motivation at high levels. If you’re tempted to try bikejoring, let us know in the comments!