Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat
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A couple of updates...
I was able to get the Burley out in some mud yesterday and it handled well enough. I suspect *any* stroller is going to struggle in really deep mud. This only sticks out in my mind because of a trial I was at last year with the worst mud ever. It was a nice day, I can't remember if we'd had rain leading up to that day though. I just remember regretting wearing my Birkenstocks...
A friend of mine just got the Doggyhut Premium XL stroller for her dog with hip dysplasia. She had no idea there were large dog strollers until she heard I was getting one for Loki. She and her dog took it for a short test walk yesterday and felt good about it. We're planning a spring dog stroll for our mobility challenged pups! Hopefully I'll come back with some good photos/details of both strollers to share.
Yea I agree that deep mud is not the easiest thing to get a dog stroller through!
Pretty neat you turned your neighbor on to the dog stroller concept. I haven't heard of that brand so I'm looking forward to learning how it works out.
I thought I'd resurrect this thread with some updates...
I've been taking it very slowly getting Loki comfortable with the stroller. She's prone to anxiety, so it's extremely important that she feels safe in her stroller. I bought the stroller at the end of November. It spent a month or so in my living room before migrating to the bedroom where Loki has been sleeping in it. First set up like a crate on the ground, then later with wheels. I realized pretty quickly that we needed to add the kickstand accessory that Burley offers because Loki likes to put her front paws in and look around before getting into the stroller. Without the kickstand, the stroller would sometimes tip when she did this. I suspected I was going to want this accessory when I bought the stroller, but held off on purchasing it to see how it went without it.
I had a pretty quiet weekend and the weather was lovely so I decided it was time to take Loki for a stroll. Saturday we did a very short stroll because I wanted to keep it a positive experience. Sunday we went for a longer stroll. This time we encountered a couple of barking dogs at once (one behind a privacy fence that we could only hear, one on an electric fence that we could see and hear), which prompted Loki to jump out! Luckily, I anticipated this and had her on a leash for safety. Once I coaxed her back in, we had a lovely stroll around the neighborhood. I'm tempted to try a park in the near future during a quiet time.
Overall, I'm happy with the Burley. There are 2 small areas where I feel like it could improve.
- The handle bar is a little low on the highest setting. I'm average height at best - I think tall people would find this uncomfortable. Alternately, I have tiny t-rex arms and don't realize it. I usually feel like handles are too short on things.
- The kickstand is hard to open. Once it's in place it makes the whole stroller extremely stable and it's easy to kick closed. I think I'm going to add a tether to it using paracord to make it easier to pull open.
This is such huuuuuge progress! Congratulations to you and Loki!
The way you trained her is spot-on excellent. Patience is key for dogs who aren't as easily motivated to try new things like this. You have got patience my friend. And it's paying off in a big way. You and Loki have soooo many adventures ahead!
I happened to interact with someone whose dog was a Burley recently, and was very impressed by its quality. It's about the same size as Nellie's current stroller, but feels more rugged. Sounds like the perfect stroller for you two!
Honestly, I am not a patient person at all. This has been my biggest struggle with Loki. She is such a BOLD dog until she psyches herself out about something. It's so hard to know what she'll just handle and when I need to give her gentle support. This was pretty easy to be patient with because so far it has been fairly passive on my part.
Part of why I landed on going for a stroller that was really intended as a bike trailer is how well built they are. It cost more up front, but I feel very confident it's going to last a long time.
One other note to share on the Burley... I have the "standard" size, which is rated for up to 75lbs. Loki weighs about 40lbs, but she is a tall, skinny dog. I think she's about 21-22" at the withers. If she was any taller, she wouldn't be able to sit comfortably - her neck/upper back would hit the cross bar. Obviously, dogs can take many shapes while staying under the 75lb limit, but taller dogs who like to sit up would need the XL size at a lower weight.
Well it sounds like this experience has helped you give her the emotional support she needs. I know lots of folks try gear like this way too soon and then it just ends up getting stashed in the garage and a bad experience all around.
Interesting thought about the size of the Burley, I'd love to include that feedback in a blog post if you don't mind.
And I agree, the investment in a higher quality stroller/trailer is worth it. We tried a less expensive stroller (not a trailer) for Nellie and she beat it up within a couple of months!
Yes, you may use my comments on the size of the Burley in a blog post. Size is a funny thing when it comes to dogs. We use weight so often to describe the size of a dog, but dogs come in so many different sizes and shapes. My quad-pawd is a German shepherd mix, but she's tall and thin like a Whippet. One of my friends used to have cocker spaniel mix that outweighs my Shepherd mix by quite a bit, but you'd never guess it to look at them. The spaniel was shorter, but more stocky and muscular. He would have fit easily in the standard Burley.
It can be weird having medium sized dogs - most things are geared towards large or small.
LOL I've never had a medium sized dog so I can't compare, but I can see what you mean about sizing of strollers, gear, etc. It's one reason why Ruffwear uses girth measurements of a dog (not weight) to determine the right harness size. Manufacturers of cheap dog harnesses go by weight, which almost always results in a bad fit. I can see how stroller sizing would be similarly challenging for a company to figure out.