If you like going on walks with your best friend, you know that sometimes your dog's up for anything - and other times, it can be all that you can do to get him out the front door. If your dog decides that they're not down for walking anymore halfway through your walk, what are you to do?
Whether you're considering purchasing a dog stroller for a senior pup or for a very young one, there are just a few things you may wish to consider in order to ensure that your dog stroller does everything you need! We'll walk you through all of the decisions you'll need to make in this handy guide.
Do you need a dog stroller?
If you live in an urban area, you're likely familiar with the fact that most dog parks are just too far away for your dog to feasibly enjoy! By the time you get there, your dog is too tired to enjoy the amenities you walked over for.
With a high-quality dog stroller, these worries are a thing of the past. Having a dog stroller is also a good idea if:
You have multiple dogs: You may have one dog that's capable of walking for miles, and another dog that simply can't go as far. Fortunately, with a dog stroller, you don't have to worry about catering to your less active pet.
Your dog recently had surgery: If your dog has undergone a procedure, you might be wondering how to continue with your healthy tradition of a daily walk! With a dog stroller, the two of you can still spend time together and get some fresh air.
Your fitness goals are more ambitious than your dog's: If you're an avid runner who frequently runs several miles at a time, you may be surprised to find that your stamina is just bigger than that of your pups! If this is the case, take a stroller along so your dog can be with you without burning out.
Your dog is aging (or is very young): Lastly, if your dog has aged out of being able to walk for miles each day (or hasn't yet built up muscles sufficient to enjoy long walks), you can still condition your pet to enjoy walks with you with a fantastic dog stroller.
What types of dog strollers are there?
If you plan on taking normal walks with your pup, then you likely don't need anything more than a standard stroller - as opposed to ones that are more specifically rated for athletic use. These are great options for the vast majority of people!
For those who plan on running with their dogs in tow, check out strollers that are made for jogging! These tend to be more lightweight and sometimes have specific features geared towards dynamic agility - making them easier to turn and maneuver when going fast.
For example, jogger strollers typically have three thinner wheels to a regular stroller's four, and the front wheel is lockable assisting with maneuverability and stability, if these are qualities you're looking for! Jogger strollers also typically have wheels filled with air, compared to standard strollers which have wheels made of foam. The air-filled wheels will be lighter and bouncier but may stand a chance of popping or puncturing upon direct impact - just something to keep in mind.
What features do you need in a dog stroller?
Dog strollers often come with similar features to baby strollers, all geared towards making your life easier and keeping your dog safe and comfortable. Which features are best will depend on how you plan on using the stroller as well as the temperament of your dog! We'll go into more detail in the sections below.
Folding: Do you live in a small home or apartment? Will you be taking the stroller up and down flights of stairs or elevators? If you plan on traveling, whether on trips or just frequently transporting your stroller from place to place, getting a folding stroller is likely a good idea. Look for an ergonomic handle and one hand, easy fold mechanism.
Easy to Clean: Any stroller needs to be easy to clean, but particularly dog strollers - primed to carry drooling dogs and their muddy paws and shedding fur! - need to be fully washable. Look for removable fabric inserts which can be machine-washed, and hardware which stands up to water and cleanser easily. Specifically, any water-resistant materials would certainly be desirable for keeping your dog clean and dry as well as making the stroller easier to clean when needed!
Safety Tether: In case your dog is on the jumpier side, it's a good idea to ensure that your dog stroller comes with all of the seatbelts and tethers it would if you were toting around a baby! Ensure your dog can ride in safety and style with at least one secure tether to keep him snugly secure.
Detachable Carrier: If you plan on going from places where a rolling stroller is appropriate to situations in which it'd be easier to carry your dog around, having a detachable carrier will certainly make your life easier! As strollers with detachable carriers often help you purchase fewer pieces of equipment overall, a stroller with a detachable carrier is a good investment especially if you were planning on buying a separate carrier.
Mesh Windows for Ventilation: Particularly if your stroller has more of a 'cabin' which is completely enclosed for your dog's protection, ensuring that these walls are actually made of mesh for superior ventilation will be essential for your dog's health and happiness during your walks.
Brakes and Shock Absorbers: When you're wheeling your pup around, you want to ensure that they're comfortable and safe. Being able to stop quickly when needed with features such as quick-lock rear foot brakes will make strolling around your sidewalks easy! Additionally, if you find you're frequently travelling around bumpy roads, looking into rear-wheel shock absorbers will make the ride much smoother for both you and your pet.
Think about how you'll be using your stroller. Will you be walking or jogging? If you're more of a jogger, getting a jogger stroller may be more your speed.
Will you need any special features? If you're travelling a lot, a folding stroller is a good idea; and if you don't already have a carrier, a stroller with detachable carrier will save you the expense of an additional product.
Consider the size of your dog. Many pet strollers are geared towards smaller dogs, which means that if you have a larger dog, you'll need to pay close attention to the weight limits for your stroller. Weigh your pup before you start looking to rule out any products which won't be able to make the cut!