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Bicycle Touring: My Dog Fiji

I am not that cruel! A few people have asked if I was going to make Fiji run the whole way while attached to the Springer America.

Of course not! Fiji’s poor legs would fall off, and that’s if overheating didn’t kill her first.

No, my precious princess, will be the bell of the road, cruising in a pumpkin-like carriage called the DoggyRide Novel10 trailer. Fiji’s comfort level will exceed the humans’, for sure.

DoggyRide FrontimageAccording to Matthys, owner of Doggy Ride, the trailer is a 10-year anniversary model. It will have the ultimate level of suave and sleek, coming with a kickstand, pet mat, roof rack (to carry groceries and other items, apparently), black spokes, hub, rims, an extra hitch and a rain cover to protect Fiji from the elements. Thank you to Matthys at Doggy Ride for sponsoring our ride and giving us a hefty discount on the trailer.

In addition to the Doggy Ride, we have received some wonderful feedback from people about how to make Fiji extra safe and comfortable.

Preparations:

  • Vet Check: Thanks to Jenny for suggesting microchipping in the event Fiji and I separate. I don’t plan on letting Fiji off the leash, but it’s always best to be on the safe side of the spectrum. In addition, she needs her shots updated, a 3-month supply of heartguard, and a general check-up to make sure she’s a-ok for the journey of a lifetime.
  • I do not like to use applications like Frontline on my dog. However, I’ve heard a lot of horror stories about ticks and fleas on traveling pet companions. In summation, Fiji and I will try to bear with the Frontline for a little while. I really want to use Teatree Shampoo on her. It only lasts a week, but it’s an all-natural, healthier way to protect dogs from those little bloodsuckers. But when will we have access to a grooming station or bathtub or outdoor water source? Are there a lot of waterhoses lying around in America?
  • Exercise! Fiji’s been getting a lot of excercise with daily runs alongside my bike.
  • Training! We have not been too successful with pre-training. She’s still as crazy as ever.

For the Ride:

  • Fiji eats Taste of the Wild Wild Boar mix. We’ll buy about two bags, and carry a 7-day supply at a time in a ziplock bag. That’s about 10 cups. My mom will send refills to different pit stops. If we run out of food before making it to our destination, Fiji is used to and prefers cooked food. So, I’ll have to stop at a store, buy a small package of chicken, carrots, brown rice, garlic and apples (boil them all together, medium rare for the chicken) to suffice her until mom can send the food to the area we’re stuck in.
  • We will carry treats for training and dentabones. Fiji has the foulest breath you’ll ever not wish to smell. Dentabones…a must.
  • We’ll ride about 8 hours a day with several bathroom breaks. Fiji will get two to three runs per day alongside the bike and a walk in the evening when we’ve settled down.
  •  For the Summer months, I’m getting a swamp cooler vest and griptex boots from Ruffwear. Thanks to Patrick at Worlds Between Lines for the suggestion! Patrick and Melissa have ridden all over the world with their pup. When they first set out on their journey, it was 101 degrees in Salt Lake City! They didn’t even have a cooling vest or system for their dog. They would soak her with water. When they got the Swamp Cooler Vest from Ruffwear, it did seem to keep Avenue content during the hottest parts of the day. I look forward to my trip even more knowing I’ll be able to keep Fiji safe in hot weather.

I really can’t think of anything else right now. I guess it’ll be a do and learn sorta thing.  Have a great weekend!

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