This time it was canicross. In case you don't have time to listen to some awesome Canadian accents in the link, canicross is like dog sledding, except instead of a sled you have a person running behind. The only rule (that I'm aware of anyhow) is that the dog always needs to be in front.
Put yourself and your dog in a harness and then connect the two with a bungee cord -- what could possibly go wrong?
Anyhow, my new gear showed up and after I spent about an hour figuring out the human harness, I took the big dog out for a run.
Here are my initial thoughts:
- The human harness comes with a cup holder. "This could be my sport!" I thought.
- On further examination, the cup holder was just a water bottle holder. That was less exciting.
- There's a bright orange "quick release" tab on the connection to the leash. That's not disturbing at all.
|I wasn't kidding.|
- Either canicross makes people instantly thin, or only thin people take it up. I'm not skinny, but I run three times a week and I just barely fit in the harness.
- The big dog is at a perfect weight and of course fits very nicely into his harness.
|(Ignore the weeds and the fact that the big dog is blowing his coat -- he's a handsome hunk.)|
- Perhaps I should limit my own kibble and I, too, would fit nicely into my harness.
- I've spent a lot of time -- a lot of time -- working on getting the big dog to run nicely right next to me without pulling, no matter what exciting thing is going on around us. We practice this three times a week. He's very good at this.
- Trying to convince your well-trained dog that he should run in front of you and pull on the leash is a lot harder than it sounds. Like, really, really hard.
|Velcro dog only gets side views taken while running|
So... I'm not really sure how to convince the big dog to run in front of me, and apparently he's too much of a gentleman to pull on the leash. Maybe this isn't our sport. Or maybe we just need to find another person to help in training. I must know someone who'd be willing to go for a training run at 6am, right?