There is no doubt that both dogs and skates have come a long way. Not too long ago, they were used as a mode of transportation. Now, modern technology allows dog lovers to rollerblade with their beloved pets. And it is captivating how some skate fanatics live for the mornings when they can leash up their pooch for a lovely sprint together up/down shaded park walks.
Not only is it a fun way to exercise, but your man’s best friend will often be delighted that their human companion can actually keep up with them. Rollerblading can be such a fun way to stay in shape and make some great memories with your Rover!
However, there are still those who see the sport as fraught with danger. Look, without proper control over the skates and the pooch, someone could easily turn into a whizzing, 30-mile-per-hour menace to themselves, of course, and other road users or pedestrians for that matter.
And that brings us to the main question: how can you rollerblade with your dog safely?
Rollerblading With Your Dog
Well, first, there is no solid consensus among skate enthusiasts as to whether dogs and rollerblading should mix. But it ought to be obvious; no one should attempt this unless they’re highly skilled skaters/rollerbladers and have confidence in their dogs’ training and obedience.
It also goes without saying that roller skating with dogs should be done in an area free of vehicles and at a time when there are fewer people around.
In other words, you need to be an experienced skater; know how to skate, know how to stop really well, know how to turn, and above all, be comfortable on the skates before bringing your dog along for the great exercise.
Otherwise, the advice here’s simple; grab your skates, get your safety gear, find your dog and leave the house.
That might sound fun but unless you have good control over yourself and your dog, the whole thing is pretty dangerous and unpredictable; you may end up getting run over by a motorcycle.
Here are some tips on how to inline skate with your dog and make sure that you and your pooch are safe while whizzing around. We will look at the basics of roller skating, tips, and tricks, and give some advice on how to enjoy the experience with your dog.
How To Rollerblade/Inline Skate With Your Dog
As we had already stated, you need to have a solid foundation with your dog responding to orders or instructions like “stop”. Try to keep it simple, first by introducing your dog to the skates and letting them smell and become accustomed to the rolling wheels. After that, get the correct leash, find a good place, and then carefully lead your pooch to the side of your body.
But still, that’s not quite enough advice to help avoid ending up in an emergency room. For you to rollerblade with your Rover without it all going horribly wrong, you need to make sure your skating is good.
The thought that you used to skate when you were a kid, and that now you should be fine skating with your doggo is not enough. You need to have great skating skills; to skate as if you’ve just been on the skates; super comfortable and relaxed when cruising at varying speeds.
And don’t forget you will be making all kinds of stops and turns, and when that time comes you need to make sure you’re doing it effectively.
Remember You Don’t Need To Rush
The next stage is to realize that you don’t have to rush into all this. What we mean by “take it slow” is that you need to make sure your dog is, at the very least, somewhat well-trained.
You don’t want to skate with a dog that has the kind of personality that fights every skateboarder or other dogs they encounter or dashes after scooters with your control.
Again, make sure your pooch is trained well enough to understand and respond.
Get Your Dog Accustomed to the Skates
Once you’re confident that your pooch is not a runway lunatic, go ahead and make them get accustomed to the inline skates. Many dogs are afraid of skates for some reason. To them, skates may appear as storage, threatening objects, or some sort of weird animals waiting to pound on them.
Small dogs, in particular, may exhibit some level of fear. So this is how you get around them; first, introduce the skates by giving your dog a chance to smell and become at ease with them.
It might take a while for things to work, and if you were more serious about doing this, you could wear them around the home. After all, you don’t want the pooch turning on your rollerblades while you are out there skating.
Get To Know Your Skate/Rollerblading Route
Next up, you need to know where you are headed. If you haven’t been skating for a while, you might want to take this as a time to rejuvenate your rollerblading skills.
Basically, the ideal locations for inline skating with your dog should be uncrowded and with some nice smooth surfaces for the exercise.
Where possible, it would be great if the place had a bit of grass along the sides to make it more comfortable for your dog’s feet. And you don’t want to deal with numerous cyclists either.
Safety Measures When Rollerblading With Your Dog
When you first start skating with a dog, you want them to run on one side of your skating path so they don’t end up crossing in front of you or tripping you over.
As such, there has to be a boundary and you can create one with the lead. This way, you can be pulling back the lead with a little snap to control or rather coach your dog.
That said, you need to pay attention to when your pooch has to pee or defecate to keep them from making sudden stops or unexpected changes in conduct such as speed.
Also, avoid choking the dog. A slower skating speed or pace is easier to keep up with, but you need how to do it properly so you don’t end up using the dog to pull you along, especially if you are skating in a more populated area.
If at all you’re interested in that sort of stuff, you need to make sure your dog isn’t overheating due to hot weather. Remember to bring some water with you to keep your dog hydrated. Also, you might want to consider doing it in the evening when the weather isn’t as hot.
When skating, the closer you can get to your house, the better and easier it will be to make this a routine. Things should start improving within a short amount of practice with your dog.
Training Tips for Roller Skating With Your Dog
With most dogs, clarity and consistency are essential when it comes to skating. This is one of the basic training tips you can get. It might be best if your pooch can walk loose leash first and be calm around you while you skate. But be sure to train your dogs all the commands and instructions without skates first.
To do this, find your dog and go up/down somewhere cool and distraction-free to test the commands you’ll be using every now and then while skating. This could be things like stop, stay, sit, leave it, jump, heel, etc.
Introduce Your Dog To Your Skates/Rollerblades
You can choose to do this when you two move out or at home. The point here is to make your pooch as comfortable and relaxed as possible when it comes across rollerblades or inline skates.
After that, wear your roller skates and take your dog to a calm place where you can comfortably practice the command at least for a few minutes. Repeat the practice in the same quiet environment, teaching your pooch how to respond or rather obey the orders.
Remember to take one step at a time, keeping up with the commands and building the time spend with your pooch. Note that the amount of distraction should be none-to-minimal.
During training, see how the dog responds in various distracting situations. By “responding”, we don’t necessarily mean “reacting”- the dog should follow your lead despite trivial disruptions such as seeing other dogs at a range.
Bring Your Pooch Along For A Ride
Lastly, once you’re done with the aforementioned steps- which may require more than a few sessions to master- you may progress to bringing your pooch along for the ride. At this point, make sure you’re certain that your pooch obeys orders and that you can stop it effectively.
Also, it’s important to use a harness leash for your pooch and safety gear such as wrist guards and knee pads for you. Wearing protective gear is imperative when it comes to roller skating.
When rollerblading, avoid wrapping the loop around your wrist, instead, hold the leash just properly so that you can be able to let go of the leash if necessary, such as when you and your pooch happen to go around opposite sides of a pole or tree or even pedestrians.
Taking Care of Your Dog While Roller Skating
Dogs may be eager to run for an extended session, but you need to know when to do so. Keep your Rover hydrated and go skating on a level you are both comfortable with. If it is hot out there, then be sure to keep the session short enough, or better yet don’t take the dog with you.
It’s good to mention that dogs perspire through their paws, therefore they won’t be able to cool down if the ground or rather the skating route is too hot. Also, running on pavements will be hard on your dog’s joints, so be sure to stop if it shows discomfort.
If you realize any signs of soreness on your dog’s joints and feet, consider taking them to the vet. A common injury often suffered by dogs in skating is worn-down pads. Fortunately, there’s a spray that you can apply directly to your dog’s feet to prevent such injuries.
Also, keep in mind that skating and running can trigger prey drive in some other dogs, and attacks could occur. For instance, a big dog could run into a small pooch and do serious damage or even kill them really fast.
So if you see a big dog approaching off-leash and you have your small dog with you, stop and pick them up before it’s too late. Always watch out for those big dogs out there even when you’re just taking your dog for a walk.
Well, we hope you enjoyed our piece about how to rollerblade with your dog. As you can see, rollerblading is a great exercise and a fun activity to spend time with your best friend.
However, there are some safety precautions that you need to take to protect yourself and your dog while you are skating. Hopefully, with this knowledge, you can bring your dog with you on rollerblading adventures and have the most fun possible.
Just remember to be safe and keep your dog close to you and within your control!