Going skiing with your dog is not only so much fun but it is also a great way to exercise for both human and dog. Here are my tips if you are thinking of trying it out.
Tips 1 – Using the right equipment
A pulling harness ensures correct use of the dogs body while pulling and makes its easier to pull. When buying a harness you should bring your dog and try the harness on. It needs to be a good fit and not chafe.
Using boots for the dogs ensures no snow lumps between paws and prevents cuts when the snow is hard.
Using an elastic line prevents any tugging while skiing.
Having a belt to connect the dogs line free up your hands and makes it easier than holding the dogs line in addition to the skiing poles in your hands.
Tips 2 – Teaching and using commands
How many commands you need is up to you, but my advice is to at least have: go – stop – left and right.
Teach the commands at home first and use them when walking your dog. It is important the commands are trained well before you go skiing with your dog. This reduces the risk for accidents and injuries.
Have patience when you start skiing with your dog. Do not think too much about getting from point A to B but think of it as training and learning.
Tips 3 – Length and intensity of the trip
Adjust lenght and intensity according to your dog (and your own) physical health. Remember its heavier for your dog to work in snow and the dog is also working with added weight (pulling you).
At the begining of the trip your dog should start of slowly to warm up. Finish the trip the same way. Never start or finish with full speed. Consider what you would do for your own body before and after a run (warm up and cool down).
Start with short trips and increase lenght gradually. Bring water for your dog and if you are going on a longer trip bringing some food for the dog can be smart. An emergencykit for both dog and humans is also good to bring on longer trips.
Enjoy natur together with your dog!