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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 09-21-05, 08:02 PM   #1
mharter
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The Dog

How do I live car free with a dog?

She will not be interested in hopping into a bike trailer, is there a good way to train her? How do I provide her with a relatively smooth ride on bumpy roads?

Matt
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Old 09-21-05, 08:26 PM   #2
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Don't have a dog, but I thought it was funny today I read an article address this very issue. I was actually not super convinced of its workability, but good luck!
newsletter downloadable here---> http://www.humboldt.edu/~alttrans/newsletter/
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Old 09-21-05, 11:24 PM   #3
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Are you talking about taking the dog to the vet and other doggie social events? Find out which local cab companies will transport animals and their requirements or ask friends for rides when needed.
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Old 09-22-05, 12:08 AM   #4
becnal
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Dogs ride in trailers all the time. I see dogs in baskets and backpacks as well. No reason your dog couldn't ride in a trailer.
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Old 09-22-05, 05:28 AM   #5
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Start by encouraging her to get near the trailer and give her treat, then move on to sitting in the trailer for a treat, then slow safe rides. She'll quickly come to enjoy it just like all the dogs riding in pick-ups with their noses in the wind. Don't worry about the bumps. She won't care.

There's a guy around here who built a little sidecar for his bike. It's hilarious and his dog looks so happy.
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Old 09-22-05, 06:36 AM   #6
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I have a Burley flatbed trailer, and strap the dog's crate onto it. I couldn't have him in a regular kid's trailer cuz he would jump around and scratch at the fabric. He likes his crate, so it's not hard getting him in - I just throw a biscuit in and he jumps in.
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Old 09-22-05, 07:36 AM   #7
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I've seen a woman around here with two small dogs in a bag on the front of her bike.

I've got a 90 lb lab, so that's not going to work for me. I've thought about getting a trailer and modifying it for my dog. It should be easy to train a dog to get used to the trailer by following the advice of sydney_b.
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Old 09-22-05, 10:55 AM   #8
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We had this side by side tandem built for about $65 dollars. $5 and $10 for the bikes and $50 at the local community college welding class shop to frame them together ( aluminum ) with a carrier rack in the back. The rack has a large tupperware tub held by a playpen baby changer net and board and a couple of bungee cords. It works great for our dogs and they love it.





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Old 09-22-05, 08:39 PM   #9
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I just got a puppy yesterday! 10 week old Beagle, named Brian. We are completely car-free, so transport of the new family member was a concern. (We also have two cats, a leopard gecko, and a mystery rodent, so these concerns aren't new).

In some cases - such as the first ride home - I will ask for a ride from friends. While this leave a slightly bitter taste in my mouth, I consider it a pragmatic approach to our car-centric cities. I don't think I'll go to hell for getting a car ride in exchange for dinner once every few years.


In the long run we have plenty of options:
- our cabs will take cats and small dogs if they are in carriers and you specify a pet when you call
- there is also a "pet taxi" service in Ottawa
- as others suggested, I intend to use a trailer in the long run (see note below)
- our vet is close enough for a dog to walk it (yes, vet location was part of our house purchase decision!)

Note on trailers: I have a Wike flatbed, and our dog breed selection was limited to breeds that, as adults, would fit an a carier which, in turn, would fit on the flatbed. Actually the trailer is huge, so weight became more the issue. Wike also makes a dog-trailer.

Pets and being car-free can work just fine.
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Old 09-22-05, 09:32 PM   #10
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We have 2 Doberman Pinschers and they can share, when necessary, a 42x36 crate. I'm in the process of building a trailer that will be capable of supporting that crate and their combined 130 pounds.
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Old 10-02-05, 06:07 PM   #11
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if you need to take your dog anywhere it can't walk on it's own, you probably aren't living a truly carfree lifestyle. a carfree lifestyle, I think, would be one which does not entertain any unnecessary clutter or waste. dogs are inherintly wasteful creatures, and living carfree is about not wasting. cars represent the worst part of american culture, and owning a dog in the city, or infact anywhere it isn't working, is just another aspect of that wasteful, indulgent culture.
yes, it's hard to realize something so special to your life doesn't exactly fit, but that's what living a better life is all about.
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Old 10-03-05, 12:01 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2mtr
if you need to take your dog anywhere it can't walk on it's own, you probably aren't living a truly carfree lifestyle. a carfree lifestyle, I think, would be one which does not entertain any unnecessary clutter or waste. dogs are inherintly wasteful creatures, and living carfree is about not wasting. cars represent the worst part of american culture, and owning a dog in the city, or infact anywhere it isn't working, is just another aspect of that wasteful, indulgent culture.
yes, it's hard to realize something so special to your life doesn't exactly fit, but that's what living a better life is all about.
Perhaps you should go live naked in a cave.

Living carfree is about not driving. People have varied reasons for being carfree, not being wasteful is only one of them.

BTW, you live in Hawaii where the vast majority of goods must be shipped in. Perhaps you should entertain the idea of moving somewhere closer to centers of production and farming. Are all the goods that you use biked to Hawaii, or do you have them transported on the backs of dolphins?
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Old 10-03-05, 12:41 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ziemas
Perhaps you should entertain the idea of moving somewhere closer to centers of production and farming.
And tell us all, where would that be? There is no place in this country that is near any center of production. Everything we buy have been shipped to the store form some distance away.
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Old 10-03-05, 01:00 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by ctyler
And tell us all, where would that be? There is no place in this country that is near any center of production. Everything we buy have been shipped to the store form some distance away.
Things don't need to be shipped nearly as far as Hawaii. If you want to prattle on about how wasteful a dog is you better take a real close look at how you live first.
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Old 10-03-05, 01:06 PM   #15
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yes, it's hard to realize something so special to your life doesn't exactly fit, but that's what living a better life is all about.[/QUOTE]

brrr, did it just get really cold in Waikiki? or is that just 2mtr's cold heart?
in my humble opinion, living with a companion animal, dog, cat etc; is living a better life. lets not get all preachy about indulgence and what we decide to eliminate or not eliminate. the original poster was just trying to ask how they can get their dog around and not burn some gasoline.

the soapbox is now available for someone else.
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Old 10-04-05, 08:13 AM   #16
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Perhaps the point the poster was trying to make is that in the situation where a domestic animal proves a reason to own a car, a person commited to car-free lifestyle would give up the beast.

He is right, though, from a purely rational perspective. A hound, for instance, that is not a work hound serves no purpose as it has no niche outside of human civilization. There are many activities we indulge in that are inherently wasteful but unwilling to consider discarding because we feel a sense of entitlement. The individual living a healthy lifestyle evalutes these activities from a hopefully unbiased standpoint and decides which activities are warranted. For instance, I own a classical guitar, which is in essence just part of a dead tree. Is the music I make with it worth it? I deem so. On the other hand, I do not clean my bathroom with cleaning products on a very regular basis because as I live alone, and do not mind a bit of shower grime, the benefit of a clean looking shower does not warrant the waste of cleaning product and plastic carton.
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Old 10-04-05, 09:02 PM   #17
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We got the dog from the pound, she was going to be put down. I wouldn't let the fear of an emergency keep me from having a dog, that would be silly. If we didn't adopt her she would be toast anyway! Pets tend to improve their owners' outlook on llfe, maybe someone here needs a pet more than they know.

I live in a city that has a lot of parks that are just out of dog walking range, and are also difficult to park a car near. The dog would be able to pee on a lot more trees and chase after more squirrels if she learned to enjoy trailer riding.

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Old 10-05-05, 09:23 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mharter
How do I live car free with a dog? She will not be interested in hopping into a bike trailer, is there a good way to train her? How do I provide her with a relatively smooth ride on bumpy roads?
I lived car-free with a cat, and I trained her to ride in a cage attached to my Brompton's front rack. That way I could take her to the vet. But for when she happened to be really sick and/or if it was cold outside, I didn't want to make her feel even more miserable than she was, so I simply called a cab. Sure a cab isn't cheap, but the money is more than made up by my being car-free at the end of the year. Occasional cab rides are factored in my transportation costs.

So if your dog can't move on his own, I suggest calling a taxi. Otherwise, I think your dog can be trained easily to step in a child trailer: a friend of mine has a big St. Bernard dog that rides in a kid trailer and just can't wait to get onboard when he attaches it to the bike. And it keeps your dog from getting all wet and smelly in the rain too.
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Old 10-05-05, 01:26 PM   #19
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I have 2 dogs and 2 cats. Our vet is three blocks away. The feed store is about 1/2 mile.
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Old 10-05-05, 08:21 PM   #20
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There is a great animal hospital blocks from our place and we'd likely spend more time getting there by car than we would just carrying the dog there on foot, but the point my original post was more about getting more enjoyment for you and your dog without a car than it was about emergencies. I think a separate thread about dealing with emergency situations at home without a car would be in order. It is a very important thing to consider when giving up your automobile.

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Old 10-06-05, 01:53 PM   #21
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Slight derail: could a doggy friend go running along side the bike if you go slow? I''m entertaining a fantastical dream of adopting a retired grayhound who could run along side me on extended tours. This sounds like there are all kinds of problems I wouldn't envision. Maybe this doggy buddy could run along on the right of me some of the time, and lay in a trailer part of the time? Hm...

For those requiring purpose, how about this one: company! Protection too. Satyr mentioned "healthy lifestyle" - maybe all the joyrides bikers take are just irresponsible wasting of calories? Wow, those ignoramuses should stop exercising and enjoying the outdoors. Or maybe not .

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Old 10-07-05, 10:06 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by lauren
10mph will tire most dogs quickly
Correct me if I'm wrong (I know nothing about dogs, apart that they bite), but aren't Huskies and supposed to have enough stamina to run pulling stuff all day long? Or do they require cold weather to perform as well?
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Old 10-07-05, 09:36 PM   #23
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Here is a device designed for walking a dog with a bike:

http://www.dog-training.com/walkydog.htm

Be careful mixing dogs and bikes, a friend of mine nearly died from head injuries he recieved when he was walking his dog while on a bike. The dog took off after a squirrel and yanked him off of the bicycle and onto the pavement.
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Old 10-08-05, 09:07 AM   #24
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"my" dog (who lives with my parents) has a serious bicycle phobia. I used to like to take him with me on short bike rides when he was little. He'd stop right in front of me to look at leaves or something and I'd hit him sometimes. Now that he's older, he's not so lacking in sense when it comes to standing in the way of a large moving object, but he also becomes upset around bicycles and absolutely can't be convinced to exercise alongside a bike.
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Old 10-08-05, 11:41 PM   #25
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Everyone that is is saying NOT to own a dog if you don't own a car is saying don't have children, or if you have children don't get rid of your car??? Are you listening to yourselves??? You all have some great ideas when it comes to some other stuff and it surprises me that you could be so heartless just because it is an animal??? Obviously you all NEED to get a companion. They will warm your heart to degrees you have never imagined. No wonder we have the animal shelter problem we have here in the US. So sad??



To the original poster- Congratulations on your new family member. Many happy and healthy years together. You won't regret it, I promise you. Ok, so now my suggestion would be to take a cab to the vet for normal visits. Also, ask about or find a vet that might do house visits for special needs. I had a neighbor who was handicapped and his dogs were his life, our vet(she was the greatest) would send over assistants to administer the shots, and normal upkeep of the dogs or if the dogs were sick. Most vets really care about animals and will go all out for those who really take good care of their pet. I own a lab, and at one point he did run with me on the bike. I had a short 6 foot leash, and he would run beside the bike. Of course this took many times of practice and you can only imagine the mess we got ourselves into. For us, it was a great way for him to get ALL his youth energy out, and it worked. You have to work slowly and build their stamina, if it is a puppy you must wait a while ect.. Ask your vet for advice. My only advice for running you dog on the bike would be to get a leash that ties around your waste cause one jolt in any direction fromt the dog, sends your handlebars out of control. You may email me if you have any other questions. I love my dog and we have had great success with training him. The best of luck to you.
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