Monday, September 3, 2012

Signature Dog Blog: Signature Pet Services Spring into Fall with the Springer



Naala (client) and me heading out for our ride using the Springer


Back from our ride and Naala is relaxed and ready for a nap!




Now that the cooler temperatures are here you can spring into fall with your dog.  All you need to do is purchase or borrow a Springer bicycle attachment (pictured above) and you are off and running (or biking).

To make things easier for you and your dog to get started with the Springer, I added some basic FAQ.  Hope they help!

Do I need to teach my dog how to safely ride with me using the Springer?  The majority of dogs quite quickly take to the Springer.  If your dog is not athletic or not in a well-conditioned state then I recommend slowly starting out gradually increasing your riding time.  Obviously, your dog must be comfortable around bikes, if not, this is probably something to either avoid or introduce very slowly and with kindess.

Is there anything I should keep an eye out for on my dog to know if she has had too much Springer fun? Initially, after the first 10 minutes you should check the pads of your dog's feet to see if they are worn at all.  Some dogs have thinner pads and they may bleed a bit until they become properly callused. Every dog is different.

What surfaces should I ride on? I like to ride in Sunnyside park on the soft pathways but I also enjoy a leisurely peddle around my neighbourhood. You can choose any surface your dog is comfortable to ride on.  A fit, athletic, well-socialized dog can go to Stanley Park but one that is not so much can just enjoy their own neighbourhood or local park. As a rule (with all the terrible drivers in South Surrey - you know you've cursed at them) I keep my dog on the opposite side to the traffic.  That way I can keep her safe. 

What if my dog chases after a rabbit - will I need to adjust the Springer while I'm riding?  With Springer, you just keep both hands on the handlebars at all times. The Springer keeps your dog firmly by your side, protecting her from pedals and wheels. If she does run around a sign post or tree, the safety release is supposed to release your dog instantly, keeping you and your dog safe.  (Caveat: At least that is what Springer claims.)  All the dogs I have used the Springer with know enough not to wrap themselves around a tree anyways.

Will the Springer work on my mom's old three speed bike?  The Springer works on most bikes. It is best to go to www.springeramerica.com to find out more information on which bike is most suitable for the Springer.  Mine works great on a hybrid road/mountain bike.

What is the cost of a Springer?  Prices range from about $50 and upwards.  You can find them at www.springeramerica.com, your local pet supply store, ebay, or even Craigs List. 

What is the best thing about the Springer?  It is a fun way to spend time with your dog and for both you and your dog to get some exercise.  Even if you hate to exercise (like me) the Springer is a blast. 

Any tips?  I keep a collar and a light lead on my dog at all times while I am using the Springer.  In the event of an accident or my dog or me become injured, it is handy to have some way to keep your dog safe and under control. 

Have fun!


Lee, Madeline and Roman