What age is biking appropriate? - Page 2

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by Swarnendu on 30 May 2018 - 13:05

At one year old, dogs should be allowed to decide themselves how much exercise they need. Set them free in the yard and they'll do it on their own.

by GSDguy08 on 30 May 2018 - 22:05

Hey guys, sorry I haven't been responding back. Going through some difficult things here lately, and got news this morning one of our deputies was killed just a couple miles from our house(The gunman is still on the run). This town has had enough hardship lately. I'll try to respond back here in a couple of days.

Western Rider (admin)

by Western Rider on 30 May 2018 - 22:05

No problem  Take care, stay safe


by susie on 31 May 2018 - 20:05

Take care!

About your question: a 1 year old dog should be able to do some structured training. (we start way earlier ).
Bicycle training in itself is no problem, it's about the ground.
Stay away from concrete, in the best case ride in the forest, and train your dog how to trot ( your speed always according to the dog's comfortable trotting speed ) - no pass... (!).
As soon as you think your dog isn't motivated any more just rest, and fon't forget water.

Kind regards

mrdarcy (admin)

by mrdarcy on 06 June 2018 - 17:06

Moved this from the " Update" thread now deleted


by GSDguy08 on 06 June 2018 - 16:06


Hey everyone, I dropped off the earth recently after putting the post up about asking for advice on bike riding. One of our deputies here was senselessly murdered last week (the man who committed the murder has been caught), and the funeral was yesterday.

I may begin the dog's running by actually running with me. The two year old has good endurance; The one year old I will just slowly build him up. With it being as hot as it is here I'm not able to do as much as I'd prefer anyway, so that's okay; We'll build up slowly until we hit winter.

Thought I'd ask this out of curiosity. I was working with a client yesterday evening, and they have a dog a dog who is absolutely terrified of leashes. Literally, if they hear anything that resembles a leash clip, or visibly see a leash, they want to bolt and hide like the world is ending. They got this dog far too young(at 6 weeks It's currently almost two) and I was told the dog's littermate (lives somewhere else) is extremely fearful of odd things. My guess is either poor genetics or a great lack of socialization. Either way, we made great progress and had the dog walking really well on a leash quickly. Getting that initial fear and other fears to lessen, and boost the confidence will take time. Anyway, just curious if you guys have known of other dogs who were fearful of things like leashes?


by Jessejones on 06 June 2018 - 19:06

Extremely sad about the deputy. My condolences.

About leash...
Perhaps try using a martingale collar/leash combo for now. No clanking Hardware sounds. Then work on desensitizing.

I like working with food for desensitizing. I just feel it is very effective and fast.
Very Basic....for novice readers (not specifically for op):
I would just click the leash hook, and give a piece of Hot Dog (or whatever). Don‘t try to hook up the leash. Just do the clicking sound and food treat. Very casually. Dont have expectation and stare at dog. Be very relaxed yourself like it is no big deal.

Once dog anticipates food, do it by getting closer and closer to dog. Always treat. The day dog lets you hook up to collar, jackpot with lots of hotdog pieces and have a party ...with happy praise. Like I said, very basic.

ADD: Just saw question: Yes,it could be genetic fearfulness...unless dog has been hit with leash. Or, very strongly corrected with leash at too young of age.

Also biking...and this is general for other silent readers doing it for first time.

Most important things to consider:

Dogs will overheat very fast, especially black dogs or black saddles and sunshine.
Watch temperature of black tar roads or parking lots.
Always check surface temperature with your hand, sometime the black tar can fry an egg in summertime or down south.

-Surface of run.
Concrete or pavement is a killer for young and old joints. Just don’t go very far on concret at all. All the shock absorbing goes into the joints. Not good.
Wooded paths or grass surface is best and you can go much farther.

Always watch your dog closely for fatigue. Dont give water if dog is panting very hard. Cool his feet first to cool him down... if you have water nearby. But, my advice, don’t let it get that far though.

Biking can be very dangerous. I know because I have had my share of spills with dogs. I also used to do dog scootering, which is a scooter used like dog sledding where the dog pulls.

Teach him first how to stay by bike, proper distance, without getting into spokes or peddles. Make sure beforehand he will not bolt to chase something.

If you need a leash (leash law or whatever)...I like to hold the leash very loosely with my little finger....that way there is a quick release if need be. But others may want a more firm hold...but I find that dangerous, but it is up to the individual.

Go very slow in teaching ...just around the neighborhood first. Build your confidence and dogs confidence on bike before venturing further.

Above all, know your dogs reactions! Know him well!


by GSDguy08 on 06 June 2018 - 23:06

JesseJones I'm familiar with dog training in general; This was a client of mine who needed help with a fearful dog. I was just asking if you guys had experienced some similar, strange fears in dogs you have worked with. Bear in mind, with this specific dog fear has over ridden the dog's brain to such a high degree that treats are 100% non existent. A good juicy steak would not exist in this dog's mine if just hearing a leash click (literally the owner clicked the leash from another room and the dog attempted to run and hide). Unfortunately the dog has had a number of negative responses in the past that have destroyed her confidence. So that is something we are in the process of improving.

I also know how to teach biking (I used to bike with a pack of Siberian Huskies), but I just wasn't sure about the conditioning part with a German Shepherd. I've not done running with this breed. My Shepherds know a number of commands, walk great with loose leash or under the heel command in general. Just looking to condition them for eventually doing a good deal of running is all.

by GSDguy08 on 06 June 2018 - 23:06

Edit to the previous post - The dog does have a good food drive; But the sight or sound of the leash(click) brings a level of fear that is so high it's quite sad.

by Jessejones on 07 June 2018 - 00:06


I did assume by your post that you did know about dogs...which is why I wrote that my words were meant as general advice for novices looking for advice (not necessarily for the op). So many read these posts that may not know as much.

I did have a GS that at 6 years of age became so afraid of thunder, after a lighting bolt struck a tree close to the house one day with a deafening crash. After that, when this dog smelled a thunderstorm coming, or felt the barometer doing down, hours ahead of any thunder, he would see nothing else and want to hide. Like you say, not even a steak would get him out of hiding. And this was an otherwise normal and brave dog. So either something happened, and if you can rule out never having been hit with a leash, or a soft dog that has been over-corrected with leash, then yes, it is probably genetic. Sometimes it may be best just to use the alternative martingale leash/collar forever, if no inroads can be made.

About biking-
The breed tests for a german shepherd in Germany calls for a 20 kilometer (km) normal trot, next to a bike, at NO YOUNGER than 16 months of age. So they are trotters, but need to work up to it. One year is still quite young and soft jointed as gs are slow to mature physically.

by Rik on 07 June 2018 - 19:06

I live close to a lake and would swim dogs to get into show condition. Biking was also a favorite method but I would not do any serious, forced before a 18 mo. or so. at 2 years, if they can;t handle a couple miles, they probably shouldn't be in the breeding pool.

The GSD is supposed to be a very rough and rugged breed, bred for rough and rugged work, I'm ok with dumbing them down a little for show, but they are either sound or they are not.

I have no issue with lite biking from 12 weeks up. worked for me many times.



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