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  1. #1
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    Tadpole Trikes & Dog Trailers

    Hi, all. New poster here.

    I just made the switch to a recumbent trike for two reasons. 1) So I can ride farther without being hindered by discomfort, and 2) so my dog can't tip me over when riding with him. With the new trike, I'll be able to ride for miles and miles, but--here's the rub--I don't think my dog will be able to run as far as I will be able to ride.

    So... (warning: harebrained scheme ahead) I was thinking about pulling a pet trailer so I can load him up when he gets tired.

    I'm wondering if anyone has tried this with a tadpole trike? Is there room for the dog to run more or less beside the rider, or would he have to be attached to the back of the trailer? He's an 80-lb Golden Retriever, by the way--not a small pup by any means.

    Here's my new ride (back-ordered Terratrike Cruiser, which will arrive in a couple of weeks):

    http://www.terratrike.com/cruiser.php#

    Here are the trailers I'm considering:

    http://www.discountramps.com/bicycle-pet-trailer.htm

    http://www.doggyride.com//simpleprod...ulture%5Een-US

    Thanks in advance for your replies!
    Last edited by Devon; 06-07-08 at 11:59 AM.

  2. #2
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    I pull me 2 kids around with my catrike speed all the time and they weigh about 55 pounds and we usually pic up some groceries while were out. I wouldnt say, pulling 70 lbs, is the easiest thing to do but as long as the hills arent to big or your legs are strong you shouldnt have a problem. We have done a handfull of 40 - 50 mile rides pulling them and by the end it kinda gets old but very do-able. Good luck! and congradulations on the the transition to a trike, your going to love it.

  3. #3
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    That is definitely not harebrained at all. I am a professional dog walker trying to decide which trike to get. I have narrowed it down to three - Catrike Expedition, Trice Q or HP Velotechnik Scorpion but whichever one I get will have to pull my dog too. I plan on going for long rides and he will not be able to run that far so a trailer is a required accessory. I'm very interested to see how it works for you and which one you get.

  4. #4
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    Get one of these and let your dog help you up those hills!
    http://www.gizmag.com/dog-powered-recumbent-trike/8789/
    Ed

  5. #5
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    Yes! I saw that dog-powered trike and seriously considered it. I'm concerned, though, that I couldn't use a trailer with it, as there does not seem to be enough clearance behind the dog.

    I also found another trailer that looks like a good possibility:

    http://www.wicycle.com/pet_bicycle_trailer_large.php

    I even found a used one on my local Craig's List, but the poster doesn't seem to want to reply to my email...

    Anyway, I'm glad you guys don't find my idea harebrained. Seriousb, how big is your dog? We'll have to compare notes after we both get our trikes. I found a guy on the Web who regularly uses a trailer with his trike, and he says that any trailer that hitches to a hub skewer should work with a tadpole trike, although you might have to mount the arm upside down to make the trailer level.

  6. #6
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    My puppy is not as large as yours. He is a lab mix? that I brought home from the shelter at three months. He is a year old now and about 50 lbs. Being a pet sitter/dog walker, I know how important it is for a healthy dog (and me) to get lots of exercise and I try to take him most everywhere I go so when I decided to get a trike, a trailer was an immediate requirement..... Yes, he's spoiled!

  7. #7
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    For those of you who trailer a dog with a tadpole, do you find that there's enough room for the dog to run next to you when he's not riding? I've been concerned that my dog will clip his heels on the trailer if he running next to me. One episode like that and he won't want to go along again. As I mentioned, he's not a small dog--rather a long and lanky Golden Retriever. I'm trying to imagine how this all will work.

  8. #8
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    Well, after shopping around a lot more, I settled on the Wike (wicycle.com) pet trailer. It was slightly more expensive than my second choice, the Burley Tail Wagon, but it had a higher weight capacity. I also like the big pocket on the back for stowing gear.

    Unfortunately, I didn't order it in time to use it this holiday weekend, but I did get my trike and have been out daily with it. My dog will trot alongside me, but he doesn't love it. He'd rather have the freedom to stop and sniff, and sometimes he acts like he wants to crawl into my lap rather than run. I'm learning his limits in terms of how far he can comfortably go.

    So even though running with me may not be his favorite thing, there's a bright side--once he understands that the trailer is HIS ride, I think he'll love it. He doesn't like to be in a crate, so I've been a little concerned about whether he'll resist climbing in. The Wike does not have a rear entry door, but the front opening is set back a bit at the top, helping it look not so much like a crate.

    By the way, I really like how being on the trike puts me right at the dog's level when he's beside me. I have the leash fastened around my waist but still hold onto it with one hand, which helps me control him quicker if he starts to lag or pull ahead of the trike. Only down side is that I'm limited to the gears on the left shifter. Fortunately, there are not a lot of hills around here so a one-handed ride at a dog's pace is pretty manageable.

    Anyway, that's the sitch so far. I'll post another update once we've had a chance to get him used to the trailer.

  9. #9
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    Yes, please keep us informed. The Wike looks like a great trailer. Hope it works well for you. I'm still deciding which trike to get but today, I am going to attempt to get my puppy on the back of my Seacycle. I put a box/bed on the back yesterday and I am going to see if I can get him off of the pier and onto the Seacycle so we can pedal up and down the creek. It should be interesting. It will take time but he will get used to just like the trike trailer.....lots of treats.

  10. #10
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    A seacycle! Now that sounds like fun. My water-loving retriever would really go for that. The hard part would be keeping him aboard.

  11. #11
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    It is fun, it almost like riding a trike but on water. I was concerned about keeping him on board too since he is a Lab mix so I put a life jacket and keep the retractable leash attached to him. He was very hesitant getting on but did real good for the first time. Each time will get easier.

  12. #12
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    I use a Trek kids trailer that I modified for my 50 lb, short legged Corsky (corgi/husky mix). She only needs to ride in it if we need to go fast or on a road that is too dangerous for her. I use it behind my electric utility recumbent so I can go fast up steep hills with her and a load if need be. The motor has a slight whine and she starts a cute little howl with it sometimes when we are riding. At first I thought she was protesting but then I noticed she only did it when the motor was whining. I am looking for a soft kennel or something that I can put on my 8 foot long trailer so she can ride when I need to haul tools for work.

  13. #13
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    OK, so... We've been out with the trike and trailer about three times now, and results are mixed. My dog is getting used to running next to the trike--and I think he's actually starting to look forward to our rides. When we walk into the garage, he'll sniff the trike first instead of running to the car door.

    The trailer is a different story. First, he tends to sit a little too far forward in the trailer, and because he's so big, I can't really shove him back in further. Having only a 12th grader's understanding of physics, he doesn't get that if he sits back further, the trailer won't ride so low in front--which I think is a little disconcerting for him.

    I've been loading him up only after he seems to have tired out from running or trotting next to me. I wanted him to think of the trailer as relief and comfort. But so far, he will ride for a while, but will then try to climb out.

    After his first attempt to jump out while we were whizzing down the bike path, I secured him with more leashes for the rest of the ride home. He started whining after a short while, probably because he was uncomfortable being trussed up like an Easter ham. So the next time we went out, I used the specially designed seatbelt harness that he normally wears in the car. He was more comfortable, but again, after a while he wanted out so badly he started barking at me, which he never does.

    So, I'm trying to understand what he's trying to tell me. Is he uncomfortable? Scared? (He SEEMS relaxed enough. Here's a shot of him I took while we were tooling around:)



    Maybe he's just saying that he's gotten his second wind and he'd rather run again. It's a bit of a hassle to keep loading and unloading him--I really want to figure this out so we can both have a good time.

    I may have erred in my choice of a trailer. The Wike is very VERY nice, but I wonder if a trailer with a rear-loading door wouldn't have been a better choice for us, as it would have made it easier to get him situated with proper weight balance. I dunno. It also needed more places where a leash could be clipped on, so I attached some D-rings using nylon cable ties.

    On a positive note, the Wike is so light, it's really not too hard going uphill, even towing an 80-lb dog. When the trailer's empty, it takes virtually no extra effort to pull.

    Also on the bright side, my dog is doing really well running next to the trike. Sometimes the trailer will hit a bump and the noise will make him spook off to the side a little, but in generally, he's getting into "the zone" quicker, where he'll tune out distractions and keep a steady pace right by my side. Yesterday morning it rained and he was not able to get any exercise all day. So early evening, when we finally got out for a ride, he was bursting with energy. He ran at a full gallop next to me for about half a mile and looked really happy doing so.

    That's been our experience so far. I'd be curious to know how it goes for everyone else, especially anyone who has gotten off to a rocky start like we did.

  14. #14
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    Great Picture! He looks happy but maybe a bit apprehensive...patience is the key. Even though it has been three times, it is still new and strange to him. Have you tried it with the bug screen closed? I have had Garrett out on the Seacycle four times so far. He will jump on with no hesitation now But he is still not relaxing much because it is new and exciting. It may take a few weeks before he relaxes and then I will too.

    Just a suggestion but you may want to get you dog a pair of Doggles. I'm going to get Garrett a pair when we get our trike. As a Harley rider, I am well experienced with the importance of eye protection...them bugs hurt! Also, there is the chance of a passing car throwing a stone up and hitting him and you want to make sure his eyes are protected.

    Thanks for the update. Hang in there....he will calm down and relax once it becomes "normal" activity......patience and time is all it takes.

  15. #15
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    Well, we've been out with the trike and trailer 5-6 times now. I was getting discouraged, as Chaz was becoming more resistant to the trailer, not less. But I think we had a bit of a breakthrough on our last outing. I discovered that if I twist in my seat and stretch way back, I can just about reach the trailer. Which means, now I can give him treats as we're riding along (try THAT on a two-wheeled bike!).

    I discovered this on our last jaunt around Lake Harriet. I only had a few dog biscuits with me, which we went through rapidly. So I stopped at the bandshell snack shop, bought three hot dogs and sliced them into little pieces. Giving him high-value treats as we slowly rode along made a big difference in his willingness to tolerate the trailer. Plus, because my hand is at approximately floor level of the trailer, it encourages him to lie down.

    So, I'm feeling a little more optimistic. Although I may never get the smell of hotdogs out of my grips...

    Seriousb, Chaz is a rather tall dog, and he sits quite forward in the trailer. His head is essentially above the plane where the bug screen would be if it were in place. If he ever gets to the point where he's comfortable riding lying down for long periods, we can try the bug screen--although I'd worry about him chewing through it in about 30 seconds if he didn't like it.

  16. #16
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    Glad to hear things are looking up. I was curious about the bug screen because I was thinking the same thing. I've already lost the screens for my french doors to the patio and I was afraid that this might be comparable. I took my own advise and went ahead and got Garrett a pair of Doggles now so he will be used to them when we hit the road. He's taken to them very well, better than I expected.

  17. #17
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    Cute shot of Garrett! It's great that he tolerates them. I will probably get Chaz a set, but only after he's fully acclimated to the trailer. Baby steps!

  18. #18
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    I take my three small dogs with me when I go out in my Catrike Road. They only weigh about 50 pounds total so pulling them is not too hard. I used to use a kid's trailer, but now I use a cargo trailer so they can see all around. The biggest problem I have is the boredom factor. My dogs want to greet people and sniff the ground. If I stop and let them out of the trailer so they can take a break, then don't want to get back in. They are not scared, just bored.

    [
    Attached Images Attached Images

  19. #19
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    tihara, have you tried running them beside you when you first start out. Exercise is the best relief of boredom for puppies no matter what size they are...other than their favorite chew toy. Once they run a bit and are tired, they will be much more acceptable to riding.

  20. #20
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    Thanks for the tip, but.......

    My three dogs are small Maltise/Yorkie mixes and very attached to me. When I tried to get them to run next to me, they end up trying to jump in my lap This ends up being dangerous for all concerned.

  21. #21
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    Dogs and Trikes for a Newbie

    This is a test. trouble logging in. sorry

  22. #22
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    Dog/trikes for newbies

    Dog lovers:
    I am NEW to trikes; don't know much about bikes either. So technical stuff is over my head. But I'm determined to buy one of these this week before I lose my motivation, so could use help. I'm lost in web-land with so much info, most of which I don't understand.

    Question: Which trike(s) would you all recommend that can accommodate some kind of doggie carrier (not a trailer) for my 7 lb Bichon who can't run due to massive cancer surgeries.

    Question: Which trike(s) would be best for me?

    My stats etc:
    1. I have MS. Balance challenges.
    2. Desperately want to recondition muscles to have them talk to my brain better. Muscles are decent, due to many years of faithful exercise.
    3. Ht 5'1.5", wt 107, XSeam 33.5 (35 w sneakers), age 58.
    4. Riding will be half on Cape Cod flat bikepaths, half on hilly S. Arizona. Both low traffic areas. There is a very long hill in AZ I want to gradually conquer.
    5. Tried the EZ3 USX. Rides ok, but really cumbersome.
    6. Need a trike that's not a big production to take places. I don't have a truck/SUV, and my arm strength is not great to be lifting a trike on top of the car. (It would be a drag to depend on hubby too.)

    So, any advice from all you seasoned trikers?? Thanks SO much. Doggie and I are really hot to trot!

  23. #23
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    Hmmm... I think you have to decide first how you will transport the dog. If not in a trailer, then you have three options, as I see it. You can attach some kind of carrier to a pannier rack on the rear wheel of a tadpole. Here's how one guy does it without a carrier:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/retrofi...ool-778561@N23

    Or you can put a carrier under the seat of a delta, like this:



    (The Greenway by Lightfoot Cycles looks like a nice delta. Probably lighter and more expensive than the EZ3 you tried out.)

    A third option might be to have your dog ride on your chest papoose-style in a carrier, like this:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/theroll...7601586541396/

    It would need to ride up high enough on your chest so it doesn't get constantly bumped by your knees when you pedal.

    You will probably want to test ride a few trikes to see which one is most transportable and allows the most leg clearance if you decide to go the papoose route.

    The easiest solution is just to get a doggie trailer, then you could choose a trike solely on its own merits. Let us know what you decide!

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