Chris, Bowie, and I love to go to outside festivals, concerts, and pet expos on a regular basis, it is wonderful to get our deaf pups out and about.
There are two “problems” we run in to when out in public. Many places can get crowded, and if your dog is leashed on the ground you can have a tough time keeping a safe space around them. We always worry about little kids and other dogs running up (without asking) to our deaf dogs in public. One afternoon we had our deaf boxers Bud and Nitro at our local Petsmart store and as we were leaving and walking out the door a little girl came running up behind Bud and gave us both a pretty good scare. While Bowie can be carried easily at 15lbs, he does get to feeling heavy pretty quickly!
Chris and I were talking the other day about what we could get Bowie to keep him safe from strangers approaching but also from dogs running up to him from out of nowhere. We also wanted something that he could be in that would keep him from overheating. Since we also represent Deaf Dogs Rock at Pet Expos and Pet Conferences, we wanted to find the right gear to keep Bowie safe and in a position where he would feel safe (like a doggy den) but also give me a break from carrying him around because it kills my back.
With Bowie in a dog jogger type pet stroller, I wouldn’t have to worry about someone coming out of nowhere and scaring us again. Also on a hot summer day, a jogger pet stroller will be perfect to keep Bowie cool because of the canopy on the jogger. Instead of Bowie falling asleep in his daddy’s arms which is uncomfortable for him, he will be “chillin like a villain” in his cool dog jogger/stroller.
We got online and read a ton of reviews on dog strollers and dog joggers. We ended up ordering a Pet Gear No-Zip Jogger Pet Stroller with the big jogging wheels (with 12″ quick release air ride tires). The next step was to train Bowie to love his new stroller. If you decide to get your deaf dog a doggy stroller here are some great tips on how to train your deafie to love the stroller. (Read Reviews on Amazon)
This is how we trained our deaf puppy to love his Pet Gear No-Zip Jogger Pet Stroller
- We feed all of our dogs in their crates so they eat in separate areas. Bowie’s crate was in the kitchen so we folded his crate up and put it away.
- Next we set up the PetGear Stroller where his crate used to be in the kitchen and added a little step ottoman next to the stroller so Bowie could jump in and out of the stroller on his own.
Above: Placed a mall storage cube with a blanket on top for Bowie to be able to jump on the cube for easy access to jump into his new stroller.
- I took the same blankets that where in his crate and carefully folded them and put them in the floor of his new stroller (so his stroller smelled like his crate).
- I took his favorite dog treats and set them on the ottoman so Bowie would jump on the ottoman when I pointed to it which he did right away.
- Next, I started dropping little pieces of his treats inside the stroller and sure enough Bowie jumped right in (he also got treats at random times when he would go in his crate if he would sit and wait without barking) so he was used to this particular positive reinforcement training routine. I repeated this training method throughout the day.
Bowie patiently waiting for more random treats to be delivered into his new stroller.
- I also started feeding Bowie his meals in his new stroller and as soon as I gave him the “eat” sign he jumped in his stroller and I shut the lid while he finished his dinner. Only shut the lid for short periods of time while you are in the same room.
Bowie waiting for his dinner to be served in his new stroller
- Throughout the next couple of hours I randomly put treats in his stroller. After about two hours, I noticed that he had suddenly disappeared and when I looked in his stroller he was sound asleep. Mission accomplished! I do think it helped that he is used to sitting in a shopping cart when ever I take him with me to Michael’s or Home Depot. When we go shopping, I always take his doggy blanket and put it in the shopping cart. Next, I ask him for a “sit, wait and watch me” and treat often.
Bowie in his new stroller sleeping like a baby!
- The next step is taking him out in public with his stroller.
- The important thing to remember is just have fun, do not stress, be patient, treat, treat, treat. With positive reinforcement training, your deaf (or hearing) dog will be rocking and rolling in the cool new doggy stroller and you will get to enjoy more events with your deaf dog.
We went out to Lowe’s two days after we started our training with Bowie and I cannot tell you how in love I am with this Pet Gear No-Zip Jogger Pet Stroller. When I am pushing it around it feels like it is floating on air. The big tires are “Air Ride” tires so you can also go jogging with your dog in this jogger pet stroller and it really does float. It also folds up easy for me to put it in the back of my car and has a huge brake bar when I need to park the jogger so it won’t roll away. The jogger also has cup holders and a tray to hold your keys or in our case Bowie’s doggy treats. I only gave him treats once and he was perfectly happy being pushed around. I think he likes it so much because he can turn around and see me through the netting on the top of the canopy (like the photo below).
Our first excursion out in our new Pet Gear No-Zip Jogger Pet Stroller was a huge success. It was so nice not having to carry Bowie around in my arms the entire time (I don’t put him on the floor because whenever he sees something laying on the floor he eats it really fast before I can get it out of his mouth). I can not tell you all how much I love this jogger/stroller and I really like that we could get it in the same color of our Deaf Dogs Rock website. I keep asking myself what took me so long to think of this. We will be using this jogger at all the pet expos, seminars, and pet conferences we go to in the future.
PS: If you decide to order a stroller I highly recommend the jogger because of the big Air Ride tires.
Pet Gear No-Zip Jogger Pet Stroller, Zipperless Entry, Midnight River
- Easy-locking, no-zip entry
- 600 Denier water-resistant material; top and front mesh windows for ventilation
- 12" gel-filled tires ride like air won't go flat
- One hand easy fold mechanism; ergonomic handle
- Interior dimensions 30"L x 13"W x 22"H; for pets up to 75 pounds