Biking With Dog – How To Cycle Safely With A Dog?
The bicycle is one of the most popular forms of transportation nowadays. People are using bikes as their primary mode of transport instead of cars or even foot. However, there are some things which make bicycling with dogs dangerous for both riders and their canine companions. There have been many cases where cyclists have lost control while riding with their dogs on bicycles and suffered injuries due to loose objects such as branches, rocks etc.
If you’re planning to ride with your dog on a bicycle, here’s what you need to keep in mind:
1) Always Ride With Your Dog On Leash!
It is always better if your dog rides on a leash. Riding with a loose leash can result in accidents and damage to other vehicles. If you don’t want to use a leash, then try not to leave the house at all during the day time.
2) Be Aware Of Other Cyclists And Avoid Distractions
Cyclists are usually very observant and they will watch out for any potential danger. They may also warn you before something happens. So, always pay attention to them when riding with your dog. You mustn’t distract yourself from watching the road by talking on your cell phone or playing music loudly. Also, never ride too close to parked cars because these can cause a collision between two vehicles.
3) Avoid Riding In The City
It is very dangerous to ride on the roads or even on the pathways near major thoroughfares. Instead, ride on quieter roads which are less populated and wider so that you will be able to spot anything which could prove to be a potential danger for yourself or your dog. You may also want to choose routes with less traffic.
4) Don’t Slow Down To Let Your Dog Explore
Don’t try to slow down in order to let your dog get a good sniff of something that has caught its attention as this can cause an accident. However, if you do see something along the way which could be of interest to your dog, then stop and let the dog take a quick look at it. You must then resume riding only after the dog has finished sniffing whatever it was that had attracted its attention.
5) Always Be Aware Of Other Road Users
Whether you’re using a leash or not, it is important that you keep your dog close to you at all times as other people may not be as careful as yourself. You should also always keep an eye out for bicycles, skateboarders, rollerbladers etc. who might veer into your path and cause an accident.
6) Don’t Carry Anything You Can’t Let Go Of Quickly
You mustn’t carry any type of bag while riding a bicycle with your dog. Keep in mind that it might get caught on something if you have to make an emergency stop. So you must also avoid holding anything in your hands while biking. Carrying a backpack with one strap over one shoulder is also dangerous and not recommended.
7) Always Wear A Helmet
You and your dog both should always wear a helmet when riding a bicycle. These are cheap and readily available and will help to keep you both protected from head injuries in case of an accident. You must also protect your dog with a canine helmet because its much smaller and lighter head can suffer injuries much more easily than yours.
8) Check Your Bike For Safety
You should always be sure to check your bike for any potential safety hazards before you start riding. This should include looking for loose handles, flat tires, and working brakes etc. You should also ensure that the reflectors on your pedals and wheels are intact and working. Finally, check that you have the correct type of bike helmet for your head and that it fits correctly.
9) Get Some Cycling Experience First
Before taking your dog out biking with you, you should first get some experience biking on your own so that you are comfortable with handling a bike before involving your pet. You must also be fully aware of all the rules of the road and cycling safely in traffic. Only then should you invite your dog along for a ride. You should start off by taking it slow and gradually increase your speed as you and your pooch become more comfortable with the experience.
10) Always Be Careful Out There
Above all else, remember to always be careful when biking with your dog. Don’t ever let your guard down because even the most skilled and experienced riders get into accidents. Just remember all the tips mentioned above and you and your pet should have a great time biking together. Just make sure you come indoors more often to give your dog a rest.
These safety tips for biking with your dog should help keep both you and your best friend safe while you’re out on the open road. Just remember that safety is just as important for dogs as it is for humans and don’t let your furry friend’s unrestrained barking distract you from the road ahead. Get out there and have fun!
Biking with your dog can be lots of fun for you both, as long as you take the necessary precautions to ensure that it’s safe and enjoyable for all. You should always wear a proper bicycle helmet to protect your head, as well as knee and elbow pads to guard your body against unexpected falls or scrapes. You should also make sure to bring lots of water and take frequent breaks when biking with your dog for long distances. Have fun!
Here are a few more bike safety tips for kids, in case you want to read them as well.
1) Get A Good Fit
Just like people, not all dog breeds are the same size. Even dogs of the same breed can vary in size from smaller to larger than average. This means that even if you and a friend both have German Shepherds, they may not be the same size and therefore not fit the same size harness. Be sure to measure your dog before purchasing a harness to ensure a proper fit.
Sources & references used in this article:
- Bike-attached dog tether (DG Granger – US Patent 9,961,881, 2018 – Google Patents)
- Cardiac gene transfer of short hairpin RNA directed against phospholamban effectively knocks down gene expression but causes cellular toxicity in canines (LT Bish, MM Sleeper, C Reynolds, J Gazzara… – Human gene …, 2011 – liebertpub.com)
- How do perceptions of local neighborhood relate to adolescents’ walking and cycling? (A Carver, J Salmon, K Campbell… – American Journal of …, 2005 – journals.sagepub.com)
- Attitudes to cycling: a qualitative study and conceptual framework (DG Davies, ME Halliday, M Mayes, RL Pocock – 1997 – trl.demo.varistha.co.uk)
- Everyday Bicycling: Ride a Bike for Transportation (Whatever Your Lifestyle) (E Blue – 2015 – books.google.com)
- Dog exercising device (J Sabot – US Patent 5,033,409, 1991 – Google Patents)
- Lithium therapy of canine cyclic hematopoiesis (WP Hammond, DC Dale – 1980 – ashpublications.org)
- Bike Snob: Systematically & Mercilessly Realigning the World of Cycling (C Koelle – 2011 – books.google.com)
- Pet carrier mountable on bicycles and the like (JF Ward Jr – US Patent 5,305,710, 1994 – Google Patents)