Dog Bike Trailer
What To Look For In A Dog Bike Trailer
- Correct size for your dog – there can be several sizes for the different trailers for dogs, make sure you get the right one for your dog (you'd be surprised how many people order it too big or small for their dog, only to have to return for the correct size)
- Many people like to drive to parks to ride their bikes, rather than ride on the street. If this might be you, make sure your dog bike trailer has easy on-off wheels and that the cabin can collapse and re-assemble easily as well.
- Hitch that keeps the bike up if trailer tips– while this may sound like a 'duh', there are cheap dog trailers out there that don't! Some dog trailer hitches even use springs to act as a bit of a shock absorber for the dog's trailer.
- Hitch that is easy to take on and off – unless your bike is dedicated to only taking the trailer along, you need a hitch that can easily separate and attach to your bike.
- Balanced trailer – again, you'd think 'duh', but some people who are unhappy with their dog trailer state that they don't feel like the trailer is balanced. Not only can that cause the trailer to tip more easily, but can make it much more difficult for you to ride your bike. Customer reviews are the best source in the real answer.
- Cornering and stopping ability – look to see what kind of cornering ability the trailer has and information about stopping distances. Most will give a top speed for using the trailer, but this is a real concern if you are biking where there is car traffic. Cars can stop quickly in front of you, or you may need to swerve or turn quickly out of harm's way. Also, be aware that if your dog is standing and you are taking a corner, the trailer is more apt to tipping, than if they are lying down (center of gravity).
- Flooring - easy to clean floor, secured, and comfortable. Most people complained about the flooring in the trailer. If it is not secured, it can end up scrunched at one end. Most dog owners also complained the flooring didn't provide enough cushioning. These are both easy to fix with some velcro tape and additional foam under the removable flooring.
- Make sure your dog bike trailer has internal leash/tether to keep your dog inside the trailer and from jumping out. Don't use a regular dog leash to secure your dog to the trailer. These are too long. If your dog gets out, either from jumping or a crash, they can get tangled in the leash which can result in injury.
Alternate Uses for Your Dog Bike Trailer
We all love devices that can be used for several things without much change. Here are a couple of things other owners of dog bike trailers do with their carriers:
- Do not use a dog trailer to carry children! It is NOT designed to safely contain humans!
- Many dog trailer companies offer conversion kits to turn the trailer into a stroller.
- Many people also love using their dog trailer to transport their groceries from local stores.
- With the wheels off, most bike trailers can work as a dog crate when secured properly in a car.
- With the wheels off, the cabin can act as a dog house when out camping.
Suggestions For Helping Your Dog Like Their Trailer
Most dogs will not like getting in a bike trailer, so start them off very slowly and on short trips – 10 to 15 minutes. It takes a while for them to acclimate the sensation of riding like this – it is a different feeling than riding in a car.
If your dog just won't get in, try taking the wheels off and putting it in the car. Allow them to get in the cabin and get used to it while driving.
If you have an active dog, try to tire them a bit before putting them into the trailer, this way they can get rid of some of their anxieties and relax and enjoy the ride.
Bicycle enthusiasts who like to go long distances love being able to travel with their dogs with them and it is great exercise for your dog as well. Put your dog on a leash and allow them to trot as you ride. When they tire out, they can get in the trailer while you continue your ride.
Recommended Dog Bike Trailers
The top 2 brands for dog bike trailers are Solvit and Doggyride.
Solvit HoundAbout Dog Trailers
Solivt HoundAbout Dog Trailers for bicycles get a 4.5 out of 5 stars in customer reviews.
They come in 2 sizes – medium and large. The medium comes only in red, while the large comes only in blue.
Dimensions for the cabin of the medium HoundAbout are 26”(L)x17”(W)x20”(H), while the large cabin is 33”x22”x26”.
Both can be converted to a stroller with the optional Strolling kit by Solvit.
DoggyRide Dog Trailers
The DoggyRide dog bike trailers, by Dutch Dog Design, get a 4.8 out of 5 stars in customer reviews.
There are 3 versions of trailers: the Original, the Mini, and the Novel.
The Original and Novel are the same size, however, the Novel version has more premium features, the most important being the fact that it is 8 lbs lighter due to an alu alloy frame and rims. The spokes and hubs are stainless steel. This construction also allows for a higher loading capacity.
Dimensions for the cabin in the Mini are 23”(L)x15”(W)x22”(H) and can hold up to 55 lbs – however the dog should not be over 15” shoulder height. The Novel and Original cabin dimensions are 31.5”x21”x25.5”, with a maximum dog shoulder height of 26”.