Cycling With Your dog

Think cycling and dogs don’t mix? That depends. Yes, just holding a leash while riding a bike is a bad idea—one sudden dog move and you’re down. But if you love to ride and would like to share the road with your dog, you have other options. One is a specialized bike leash with a shock-absorbing spring device. A steel clamp attaches to the seat bicycle-with-dogor frame of your bike, with a spring arm for the leash that reduces the impact of a dog’s sudden movements by as much as 90%. To find one, just search online for “bicycle leash.”

For longer trips—or smaller, less athletic dogs—a better option is one of the many carriers or trailers on the market. Essentially a dog-ifi ed take on the child trailer, these contraptions have reinforced bases that increase stability and safety. Just do your homework and make sure you pick the best model for your dog’s size and weight, and the amount of use and type of terrain you expect.

Lastly, there’s bikejoring, a version of dryland mushing in which your dog is harnessed to your bie. All you need for that is a padded harness for your dog, a padded belt for you, a gangline—and a dog who loves to pull. First step is to teach your dog to pull—and if you have carefully taught your dog not to pull on leash, don’t worry. You can train him to pull only when wearing the harness. For practice, have your dog pull something small like a log before trying small trips with you on a bike.