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Just do it, doggy

Well, I may have mentioned that my dog needed to learn how to ride a bike. Not really, but I had to find a feasible way to tow him around town and I just hate being stuck in my car on a nice day when the goal is to get somewhere fun nearby. Compared to actually needing the car to carry something (or that needs to be contained) or drive a really long distance. So, we bought the dog trailer. I bought it today from my friend for a deal because the upholstery was ripped and he was going to send it back to the company. I forgot the plastic cover at the bike shop because I was in such a hurry to get home. This did not stop my attempt to get out on the road and take the little doggy for a test ride to the dog park.

Things went bad. I made a makeshift cover out of extra fabric, duct tape and bungee cords that I had lying around. I put the dog in and realized since he wasn’t sitting like a child with his feet forward; there was too much weight in the rear and I had to counterbalance the trailer. Before I found the brick in the attic, we would make a few feet then the contraption would fall on its rear, stunning the dog, and frustrating me. So, the brick worked for a few blocks placed in the front of the trailer, but then my foot hit the trailer hitch that was attached to the chain stay. This made the hitch rotate and then run into my spokes, stopping us in our tracks. I tried to readjust the hitch but (bear with me) – I think – the chain stay on my bike was too narrow for this particular hitch, which made me have to move it towards my feet (because the chain stay gradually widens in circumference as it gets closer to the bottom bracket), which made me hit the thing and then run the cycle again. After several attempts to stop and restart, the dog started getting uncomfortable, I could tell because his barking was very loud and consistent. I couldn’t deal with it anymore, but still determined to make it to the park. I figured since I was more than a few blocks from my house at this point, I would ditch the trailer and come back for it later. There was Pizza Luce (at 32nd and Lyndale) down the block, so I thought it was relatively safe for me to leave it by the bikes and come back in a couple hours. It turned out that it was, there was an employee outside and he suggested that I attach the trailer to his bike while I was gone, no problem.

We made our way, bike, dog and me, and thankfully with the new collar we got our dog recently that improved his walking, I was going to make one more attempt to have him run alongside me while I biked. It turned out to be the most wonderful trifecta, the dog ran along, the bike stayed the course and I really just had to hold on. We went to the park, I came back and got the trailer off of the guy’s bike that I saw, and the dog is exhausted from sprinting for two miles. I have an extra bicycle trailer now, and a couple of bent spokes – but we’ll keep on keeping on.