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Discussion Starter #1
Stark and I have been biking almost every night, even in the rain and snow, we are hoping to try for an AD this year or next. Unfortunately my biking skills aren’t as superb as Stark’s so now that the ground is covered in ice (we had a mild few days and now everything is frozen over again) I am nervous to bike on it. I am not nervous of Stark pulling or taking me off because he really is doing an amazing job, I am just nervous of hitting a patch of ice and loosing control harming both Stark and myself.

I would like to get a treadmill one day but right now that’s not in the cards (stupid tuition!). Is there any other exercises we can do indoors/outdoors that will build muscle that will aid in our biking adventure (and of course in other venues)?

We are on hiatus from SchH until the end of this month (maybe longer due to our TD having health issues) so we have some spare time to work on this.

We are set to start our 4th?5th? Agility course in a few weeks time which will help and be fun, but I would like something else to do at home.

Just thought I would mention that I have a set of weave poles (12 that can be taken apart into 2x2’s), an adjustable jump, a tire jump, an A-frame, and a teeter and a pause box as well as a perch/table.

We have stairs we can work on as well… any ideas?

We do work on these items regularly but I am looking for ideas to change things up a bit.

Also any exercises that will increase muscle in the rear would be nice too.
 

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I wouldn't bike at this time of year due to fear of the ice. If you are crazy enough to do it, be sure to be ready to drop the leash if your bike starts to slip and fall so you don't hurt your dog.
 

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Swimming is great, but probably not feasible where you are right now ;).
We use Vertex supplement for muscle building (use it in conjunction with exercise) it is a great product. We started using it last year when a friend in another SchH club mentioned it when we were lamenting about a male we have that had just lost a bunch of weight due to a food allergy. We got him straightened out with a holistic vet nutritionist, but wanted to get some weight back on him. The Vertex is great, we also put our older male on it who was having some joint issues and he really improved as well. Both dogs muscled up nicely and the older male is moving like he's years younger.
Sorry I can't help with the exercise thing, ours swim all winter in the creek on our property.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I wouldn't bike at this time of year due to fear of the ice. If you are crazy enough to do it, be sure to be ready to drop the leash if your bike starts to slip and fall so you don't hurt your dog.
I must be insane then! ;)

Definitely ensure he is safe and that I can easily drop the leash if something were to happen, no worries.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Swimming is great, but probably not feasible where you are right now ;).
We use Vertex supplement for muscle building (use it in conjunction with exercise) it is a great product. We started using it last year when a friend in another SchH club mentioned it when we were lamenting about a male we have that had just lost a bunch of weight due to a food allergy. We got him straightened out with a holistic vet nutritionist, but wanted to get some weight back on him. The Vertex is great, we also put our older male on it who was having some joint issues and he really improved as well. Both dogs muscled up nicely and the older male is moving like he's years younger.
Sorry I can't help with the exercise thing, ours swim all winter in the creek on our property.
Well, if it were up to Stark, he'd be swimming all year round. But no, it's not possible where we are for him to swim and no where around here offers indoor swimming for dogs, not even the vet offices. I would have to travel to TO or London for that which I am unable to do.

As for suppliments, because Stark is so young (21 months) I don't feel comfortable giving him any other suppliments other than his Vit. C with his meals (raw fed). He isn't having any joint issues or loosing weight but he is starting to fill out and his chest is overpowering his rear a little it seems (could be because he is in the midst of filling out and his back hasn't caught up to his rear yet). Prelims looked good and will be headed for his next set in 3 months so I don't feel it necessary for him to be on suppliments - maybe in the future but not at this time.

Will definitely keep that information bookmarked though, thank you. My older female could of used that before she passed, great information. Thank you.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Sled pulling?
That's actually something we have done a little of - just a few times for fun.

Just wondering about this - how much weight would be suitable for a 21 month/84lbs dog?

We tended to start downhill and allow him to pull on flat as he went (kids about 50lbs on snow/ice) should we start on a flat surface?
 

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I took Karlo walking 6 miles once a week last Summer/Falll or should I say pulling....it built muscles, not sure who benefited more, him or me.
After several of those sessions I saw a buff pup and a sore mom. I miss those days!

I didn't discourage his pulling me, he was on a flat and I had a prong on a seperate line if I felt he needed it.
If I could swim him, I would. I think getting him hooked up to a proper harness and sledding will be a blast!
 

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Elisabeth

I think it was Wayne who had a video up of his dog pulling the kids on a sled. Might send him a PM for some advice. He will have to pull himself away from the puppy though. You should also suggest he post some pictures :)
 

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@ Jane - We have been doing a little bit of that, especially in the bush, he pulls like a maniac while hiking (off leash about 99.% of the time) so I have been doing that and allowing him to pull me up the hills and such. I also have him running up and down the hills in the bush fetching sticks, snowballs, etc..

@ Brandi - I think we will try sledding again. I remember those video's, they are hilariously fun to watch!

I have his agitation harness I can hook up, this is what we used last time and we will head to the park this weekend maybe for some sledding.. well, pulling. :)

What is the max. weight you would allow him to pull on a flat surface?
 

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Whose muscles have priority? They make some pretty reasonable indoor bike trainers you can put your bike on.... a lot less expensive than a treadmill.
The sled idea is good. Or put a pack on doggie's back and jog with him.
 

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Whose muscles have priority? They make some pretty reasonable indoor bike trainers you can put your bike on.... a lot less expensive than a treadmill.
The sled idea is good. Or put a pack on doggie's back and jog with him.
Stark's do.. lol.. I actually want the treadmill for Stark, but I will use it too.. ;)

We have a pack that we use (have since he was little) and he is up to about 2ish pounds right now, would you increase that? To what?

I think we are going to give sledding another try since we still have a bit of snow, jogging is something I do as well, usually at night but since it has been so cold out I have not been going for as long as I woud like.
 

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Stark's do.. lol.. I actually want the treadmill for Stark, but I will use it too.. ;)

We have a pack that we use (have since he was little) and he is up to about 2ish pounds right now, would you increase that? To what?

I think we are going to give sledding another try since we still have a bit of snow, jogging is something I do as well, usually at night but since it has been so cold out I have not been going for as long as I woud like.
I would not venture to guess how many pounds to use since I don't know your dog. As for jogging, the only thing that kills it for me is wind, ice, heavy rain or snowing. But I imagine it gets colder up there than in New England. I can remember running in weather so cold that my eyes froze open. Not too smart.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
In the summer I use an attachment but lately I have been just holding the leash (attached to a prong) because I am afraid of falling.
 

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I think you can safely let Stark carry 10% of his own weight in his pack at his age.
 

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I am not sure what is a safe weight due to his age, but I'd suggest starting with a low weight maybe 10-20 pounds and building up. How much weight he should pull would also depend on whether you're doing short distances like in weight pull or longer distances like in sledding.
 
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