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Traveling with dog questions

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Barley, my 3 y/o golden, and I have been riding together for a week now. Each ride is a little longer, sometimes a little faster, but all of them have fun stops: swimming holes, treats, a chance for people to fuss over him. He's doing very well. Unlike his brother on the ATV, Barley will not wear doggles, but he sits immediately behind, and stares thru, the windscreen so it might turn out to be a non-issue. So we continue training, with the hope that he will be ready to travel with me in two weeks when I ride to Ontario for five days of sidecar camping.

But I have two questions for those of you who have done this before.
1) What is a realistic daily range for a dog in a sidecar? Can he handle 10 hours if it's split up with play time at every fuel stop?
2) How do you protect your dog in the event of a driving rain? Do you just snap the cockpit cover in place with a corner unfastened or..?

TIA,
Pete

Well, crud Pete. I had an answer all typed up, hit submit but inadvertently hit the scroll button on the mouse at the same time and the whole works disappeared. Lets try again...
Archie doesn't like the windshield but he does wear the Doggles. He lays down at hiway speed and pops up to see what's going or or where we are at when I slow for any reason. And once in a while at speed he'll pop up and look around. The rain blows over at speed but we get wet if we're going slow or stopped. He has his jacket but other than that we just live with it. When we stop I'll put the toneau cover on or the rain cover to keep his bed as dry as we can. No cover when he's riding though. Just mutual thoughts that well run out of it.... Oh yeah, one more thing I had in the first answer. Plenty of stops for potty breaks and drinks. We carry a water dish and large jug of water, refilled along the way as necessary.... Lets see if I can get this posted without further incedent....

Tom Wells aka Reardan Tom

Saturday when the tropical rain poored down on me I put on the cover for Camilla and kept the inside corner back with a rubber tye. Result: she just curled in and all I saw was her back. As soo the rain stoped and I slowed down the typical barking and her nose arrised again.
Sven

Thanks for the feedback. Barley seems to prefer riding with his nose directly behind the screen, so I could probably fold back the front foot of the cover and the screen would keep the inside dry as long as I was moving.

It's funny watching a dog getting used to the rhythm of the road. It's a lot like a rider getting used to a new bike. I reinstalled the seat so my wife could ride with me, but Barley clearly thinks of the hack as his own. Though he has taken to curling up on the seat to sleep, it would probably be more comfortable for him if the seat were removed for long trips, giving him the option of stretching out full length.

Jeez, the things we do for our dogs!

Pete

Hi Pete, have you checked out Ara's adventures with Spirit on his site and thread here The Oasis of My Soul?

Tom Wells aka Reardan Tom

Yes, I think Spirit was the motivating factor in my getting a hack of my own. But comparing a famous and experienced canine traveler to a neophyte might have me disappointed in my dog's inability to keep up. So I compare Barley today to Barley yesterday...but was hoping for tips and tricks I might have overlooked.

He really seems to enjoy hacking! I don't want him to lose that.

Pete

A day at a time, one trip at a time and it all adds up to an experienced canine traveler soon enough... Archie is my best good riding buddy for sure but I had no idea when we started it would lead to this.

Tom Wells aka Reardan Tom

Why limit yourself to Doggles? My dogs never took to Doggles in the least, but will wear just about anything else. These happen to have holes in them for the dogs to see through. I also adapted many pairs of standard Goggles that they will wear just as well. The only Doggles glasses they ever took to though were the soft-mesh style. I don't believe those are even manufactured by Doggles these days, but I may be incorrect on that.

This topic has been discussed in pretty good detail at the Adventure Rider Forum, so you may want to check out the replies and tips there, too.

My dogs pretty well stay in place when in the hack, no matter if I am flying the chair or simply washing the Ural.

http://youtu.be/JIIPHtrO0p4

They will wear goggles, Doggles and even hats. However, the Doggles are the least favorite things for them to ride with and they will fight them more than anything else. Usually, they like to stay behind the hack windscreen or ride with their haad hanging from the door opening, but both Murphy and Dusty do very, very well in riding in the hack. I use a harness stap on them both. It keeps them in place in the hack, but allows them to move a bit on the seat. Sometimes I run with the hack seat out, but they seem to like it better when it is left in place.

My answers to your questions are specific to what I have found on my Ural:

My dogs I ride with now are both smaller ones than a Golden, but they, and the two who passed away, Baby and Bosco, have all taken to sidecar riding from day one. The Ural does not carry as much gas as many other makes, so pit stops are maybe every 100-125 miles or so, I have to pull in and get gas or do a pit stop. I always allow the dogs to take on water or relieve themselves during this stop. They don't always have to, but it is just a habit I have gotten into and not a bad one to develop. Takes only a few moments and allows me to rest from the constant forces of sidecar piloting. My Poepye arms appreciate the occasional rest, I believe.

I was hit with rain often when I lived up in the PA. area. The hack cover worked well in being able to keep the dogs somewhat dry, but I ran with three dogs back then, so a sudden shower was not always easy to get pulled over and apply a rain hood and coat to each of them. Pulling the tanneau cover over was a bit easier, but didn't always keep all the rain off them. Hail was even worst to contend with and the tonneau worked best in that event. Modifying a cover specifically for the dog is likely the better thing to have available, but I ran with 3 dogs as the norm back them, so a workable mod was not as easy to come up with, as one would hope. Keep a dry towel handy though. Dogs get cold when damp, so a dry towel works pretty good to help dry them off. I always have a magnetic bowl that I keep attached inside the hack trunk. This gives me something to put their water in when we do stop. I keep a bottle of water in the trunk, as well. All in all, I don't see any problems with long rides with the dog. If your golden is a chick magnet, like Murphy is, then you probably will have some interesting stops each time you fill up with gas and make a pit stop and such. Let the adventure begin and enjoy your ride with your pet.

If yoy hold your ears and then watch the clip from my signature block, you can see that Murph does not limit himself to just wearing Doggles. 🙂

Glenfiddich - 7/5/2010 6:09 AM

Barley, my 3 y/o golden, and I have been riding together for a week now. Each ride is a little longer, sometimes a little faster, but all of them have fun stops: swimming holes, treats, a chance for people to fuss over him. He's doing very well. Unlike his brother on the ATV, Barley will not wear doggles, but he sits immediately behind, and stares thru, the windscreen so it might turn out to be a non-issue. So we continue training, with the hope that he will be ready to travel with me in two weeks when I ride to Ontario for five days of sidecar camping.

But I have two questions for those of you who have done this before.
1) What is a realistic daily range for a dog in a sidecar? Can he handle 10 hours if it's split up with play time at every fuel stop?
2) How do you protect your dog in the event of a driving rain? Do you just snap the cockpit cover in place with a corner unfastened or..?

TIA,
Pete

Just returned today from a 2,000 mile, nine-day trip with our Cairn terrier. He loves the ride - he can't get enough. He does sleep a lot when we stop:)) Max we have gone with him is 350 miles/nine hours with no problems. Our Hannigan sidecar has a removable hardtop, so no issues with rain. I get wet, Momma and the puppy stay dry.

Wow, a lot has happened since I asked those questions! Barley now has about 7000 miles under his collar and we are an accomplished traveling/camping team. He is, without a doubt, the best traveling companion I've ever had...except for the delay factor his face creates at gas and food stops. The Ontario trip was a lot of fun. Our max mileage for one day was 500 miles with plenty of rest and play stops, but 350 turned out to be our average. Riding solo I can cover a lot more ground, but looking out for my dog resulted in a different style of travel that was actually a bit more enjoyable as with him I end up seeing a lot more of the lands we explore.

Lessons learned:
1 Shade is important
2 Water is even more important
3 A day without play is boring
4 Chasing rodents is a lot of fun!
5 A custom cockpit cover with a zippered hatch (sort of like a kayak skirt) does a fine job of keeping him dry as long as we are moving
6 The command "Look sad" can melt hearts and get us a room even in no pets allowed motels

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