Dog

  • Fitting A Dog Harness

    Fitting a harness.

    It’s not as difficult as it might seem but there a large variety of harnesses available which can make fitting a dog harness seem like a daunting task. The key is measurements. Below we have listed the types of harness that we would recommend for different activities, hopefully making it a little easier.

    When fitting a harness it is essential to take the measurements, not rely soley on ‘breed guides’, that’s why we don’t use them.

    The key measurements are the neck and the dog’s girth. It is also useful to know the dogs weight. Then depending on the type of harness you may also need the length of the dogs back.

    Activity

    Walking

    Ruffwear Webmaster, Hurtta Y-Harness, Fleece Lined Harness, EzyDog QuickFit, EzyDog Chest Plate Harness, Ezydog Convert Harness, Hurtta Outdoor Padded Active Harness

    Hiking and Trekking

    Ruffwear Webmaster, Fleece Lined Harness, Kurgo Tru-Fit, Ezydog Convert Harness, Hurtta Outdoor Padded Active Harness

    Canicross

    Nome X-Back, Howling Dog Second Skin Harness, Non-Stop Free Motion, Non-Stop Line harness, Howling Dog Tough Skin

    Bikejoring

    Nome X-Back, Howling Dog Second Skin Harness, Non-Stop Free Motion, Non-Stop Line harness, Howling Dog Tough Skin

    Scootering/Rigs

    Nome X-Back, Howling Dog Second Skin Harness, Non-Stop Free Motion, Non-Stop Line harness, Howling Dog Tough Skin

    Tracking

    Ruffwear Webmaster, Non-Stop Line harness, Howling Dog Second Skin Harness, Hurtta Y-Harness, Ezydog Convert Harness, Hurtta Outdoor Padded Active Harness

    Agility/Flyball

    Hurtta Y-Harness, Fleece Lined Harness, Non-Stop Line harness, Howling Dog Second Skin Harness,Ezydog Convert Harness, Hurtta Outdoor Padded Active Harness

    Mountain Work

    Ruffwear Webmaster, Ruffwear Double Back
    Training/No Pull Buster Dog Halter
    Car Safety Kurgo Tru-Fit, EzyDog Chestplate Harness

     

    You will also see that on the website under Dog Harnesses we have set subcategories for different activities to help make the choice easier.

    Fitting a working harness.

    This is often different than fitting a standard everyday walking harness.

    You might be surprised just how many times we hear, “What size harness do I need for a Lab?” or “What harness will fit a pointer?” Unfortunately there is no clear standard in dog sizes and also no standard in the size of equipment. So a medium harness by one manufacturer might be considerably larger that a medium in another. Also the size on the label doesn’t relate to the size of the dog. A small doesn’t mean it is for a small dog, a large for a larger dog etc. The key to getting the right size is taking the measurements.

    The main measurements you will need for fitting a harness are the neck size, this is often taken closer to the shoulders that you would when measuring for a collar. The girth, this is the measurement around the deepest part of the chest. The length of the back, from the base of the neck to the base of the tail (keeping the tape measure straight, not following the curve of the back) and the dog’s weight.

    Neck Fitting

    When fitting a working harness the neck will generally be tighter than you are used to when fitting a collar (the two finger rule does not apply) so don’t be alarmed if it feels a little more snug than expected. This ensures that the dog is taking the force on the strongest part of their shoulders and keeping the harness away from their shoulder joints. If it is too loose around the shoulder the straps will start to press on the shoulder joint itself and impinge movement becoming uncomfortable for the dog.

    If you are fitting the harness for a dog with a heavy coat or a lot of lose skin around the scruff then you will need to pull some of this through to ensure neck of the harness sits correctly on the dog.

    Length Fitting

    This can differ depending on whether you are fitting a short shoulder pull harness or a long harness. The key aspect to look at when fitting the length, if it is the longer harness like and x-back, is that the open V at the base cannot be pulled down over the dog rear and fall behind the legs. This is too long. The V or attachment point should sit just at the base of the tail.

    Girth Fitting

    This is the one that may ultimately affect your dog’s performance the most. If you don’t get this right and the harness is too tight your dog will not be able to breath well. If the dog starts to feel short of breath then this will put them in the most discomfort and ultimately they won’t perform. Also because of the way the dog moves when running then it could start to rub.

    Essentially the message here is to measure you dog well. If need be take the measurement several times and take the average. Don’t 'guess-timate'. With any working harness it needs to be comfortable for the dog. If the harness doesn’t fit properly then it will essentially discourage the dog from pulling well and changing to a well fitted harness makes a noticeable difference.

  • Garmin GTU-10 - Quick Review

    New on the market and great tool for any owner who's dog like to talk themselves off for a walk. The Garmin GTU-10 is the latest of the dog GPS tracker on the market. Whilst this model does rely on mobile network coverage this is the best we have found of this type. The collar can be tracked either from your computer via the My Garmin site, or using the iPhone or Android app. The unit is very simple to set up. Simply register the unit with My Garmin. my.garmin.com, set-up any email address or mobile number to send notifications, or a GeoFence around an area that will alert you when the dog leaves this area.

    • No running cost for the first year. £45 p

      Garmin

      er year thereafter.
    • Good battery life - set to 15 min check-ins- 5 days outside the GeoFence, 4 Weeks inside the GeoFence. 5 min check-ins - 3 days outside, 10 days indside. 30 sec check-in - 20 hrs outside, 24hrs inside.
    • Waterproof ((IPX7)
    • Low battery warning via email
    • You can change the settings live so if the dog leaves the GeoFence and you need to track the dog you can change the checkin rate.
    • iPhone App and Android App

    Garmin GTU-10, £179.99. For full details go to, http://www.innerwolf.co.uk/garmin-gtu-10-gps-dog-tracker.html Garmin GTU-10 modeled by one of our more well trained hounds!

  • Protect Your Dogs From The Winter Elements.

    Over the past few years here in the UK we have experienced colder than normal winters and they caught us out because they were early. Dogs feel the cold as much we do, so it's important to keep them warm and dry while out on their walks. Dogs tend to grow thicker hair over the winter months but this can sometimes not be enough to protect them from the cold. Dog coats are the perfect way to keep them warm and protect them from the winter elements. There are a wide range of dog coats available whether you go for the Hurtta Winter Jacket with its fleece lining, fur collar and underbelly protection to keep them or a Timberwolf Wax Jacket with it's waterproof waxed coating protection. Coats will keep your dogs warm, dry, clean and protect their main muscle groups.Hurtta Winter Jacket It's important your dog gets the right size coat. Measuring your dog is easy, take a tape measure and hold it an inch above their back and measure from the base of the tail to the base of the neck. Don't be tempted to lay the tape measure on their back and follow the curve as this will only add to the measurement and therefore you'll get the wrong size coat. See our earlier blog post, Dog Coats – Getting the right Size http://howl.innerwolf.co.uk/?p=75

    Dog boots can also be used to protect your dogs paws from the salt and snow. The boots keep your dog paws warm and will prevent the snow freezing in their paws which can be very painful for the dog. Salt can be an irrritant on their paws so boots will ensure this doesn't happen and your dog can go for a pain free walk in the snow and ice. Another way to protect their paws is Shaw Paw Wax it helps prevent damage to the paws in the cold winter months and on long hikes all year round.  It's also great to stop your dog slipping on laminate or tile floors.

    Even though it's cold and you may not feel much like venturing out your dog still needs to be exercised. So as you need to be warm and dry so does your dog, coats and boots will help them keep warm and dry and make the daily walks more enjoyable for them.

  • Keeping Your Dog Healthy And Active

    It’s important to keep your dogs fit and healthy through both exercise and the food they are fed. Obesity is a big problem for dogs today as they are not getting enough exercise. Dogs on average need 1-2 hours of exercise a day. Depending on their breed and age they may require more or less. There are many different exercises you can do with your dog other than just the usual walk. If you are a runner then why not combine the dogs walk with your run. This is an ideal way for your dog to burn that excess energy. There’s plenty of equipment from the basic hands free leash, the Ruffwear Roamer leash to the more technical CaniX equipment. CaniX organise many events throughout the UK from August bank holiday weekend through to May. They are also holding the European Cani-Cross Championship in 2012. You can enter the events as you wish and don’t have to compete in them all, whether you are doing it for fun or competing. Other event includes the ParkRun they are free events that take place on every Saturday morning. They are staged all over the county so there will be one near you and are for runners CaniX Event Westonbirtwith or without dogs. You don’t need to attend organised events to run with your dog, you can do it in your local park, countryside footpaths or a road run. Running will just help your dog burn more energy. If you are just starting out running with your dog then you need to be careful not to over do it. Like us they need to build up their fitness levels. So keep an eye out for signs of exhaustion, heavy panting, wheezing, and lameness, disorientation, slowing or stopping. Don’t take your dogs out in very hot days. Carry plenty of water to keep your dogs hydrated. There are plenty of useful products available so you don’t have to carry big bowls around, the EzyDog Fold-a-Bowl or the Bowl n' Bottle. In warm weather your dog will be hot when they finish their run, so a Ruffwear Swamp Cooler coat is ideal you just soak the coat, wring it out and put it on the dog, it will keep your dog cool, this can be used during or after exercise. Other useful products you could when running with your dog are to protect their paws are dog boots or Shaw’s paw wax this is also good in cold weather and on slippy tile or laminate floors. If running is not your sport and cycling is then the Walkydog would be ideal. It attaches to your bike seat post and the dog runs safely along side you and burns plenty of energy in the process. If you like to get out and about yourself in the countryside with your dog then why not try a backpack for your dog the EzyDog Summit Backpack or the Ruffwear Approach Pack. Your dog can then carry their own poo bags, treats, water and bowl. Or on longer hikes their own roll up bed. The increased weight in the back pack can also help your dog loose weight and even calm over active dogs on walks. It’s recommended that the dog carries no more than 25-30% of their weight. So 25kg = 7.5kg in the bag. This weight must be increased gradually, again the help the dogs fitness build up to heavier weights Dog ScooteringThere are other activities that you’ve probably not thought of that will help your dog keep fit and healthy.  There is scootering the dog will do most of the work pulling you along while you’re standing on the scooter (it’s similar to mushing which is a winter sport). The Dax Scooter is a good lightweight, foldable scooter. The dog wears a harness that’s attached to the scooter via a gang line you will need to start the dog off with a little push and up hills; once they are off they will pull you around so providing plenty of exercise. This type of activity is best done in the countryside or an open field, where you have permission, as it’s safer than trying to avoid traffic or people. Alternatively to using the scooter you could use your bike with an Bikejoringattachment on the front, this is called Bikejoring  Again the dog is harnessed up and attached to the bikejor via a Bikejor Converter and bungee gang line. The dog then runs along pulling you on your bike. Again a great form of exercise for your dog that will help burn all that energy, and a great way to start your dog off if you are looking to move on to scootering because the bike allows you to do some of the work so that initially and it is not all on the dog. As it’s important for us to fuel our system when regularly exercising its also important for dogs to do the same. There’s plenty of good notorious food on the market such as Chudleys Working Crunch or Orijen. Orijen is a totally natural feed, high in protein and doesn’t contain any grain fillers an unnecessary part of a dog’s diet (excessive carbohydrate) so ideal for active healthy dogs. There are also a number of supplements on the market that can be added to your dogs food to health keep them and their joints healthy. Please do avoid doing any of these activities in the summer heat of the day. Leave it until evening or early morning. So overall dogs in many ways are like humans they need regular exercise and a healthy diet to keep them fit and healthy.

  • Dog Coats – Getting the right size.

    It’s that time of year again when the nights are drawing in and the weather is starting get colder and wetter and many dog owners are now looking to buy a new dog coat. After several years of supplying dog coats and trying to give as much instruction online to measure a dog for the right size coat, we still have numerous coats returned to exchange to another size. Not that we mind doing it, but I’m sure people would be happier to get the correct sized coat first time. Every year it is surprising how many people try to guesstimate the dog coat size, nine times out of ten this will be wrong. So here are a few tips to getting the right sized coat for your dog.

    • When measuring the dog, measure from the base of the neck (near the
      Dog Coat Size Guide

      Dog

      collar) to the base of the tail. This measurement must to be a staight line, the tape measure tought, NOT following the curve of the dogs back.
    • Try to get your dog to remain standing when you are measuring. A sitting dog will add a few inches to the measurement.
    • Measure the dog 3 times and take an average. This will give a better measurement.

    There are some breeds that are not easy to measure for due to them having a long body in comparison their chest size. Dachshunds or Dandie Dinmonts for example are not easy to fit a coat and may require a specially made coat or take them along so they can be fitted. Some style of coats increase in sizes differently to other styles so you may

    Hurtta Winter Dog Coat - Modelled by Enzo

    Hurtta

     not be able to get one that is exactly, to the cenimetre, the right size. But with coats ranging from 24cm/10inches to 85cm/33inches to fit even the largest Great Dane there will be a coat to fit. Ideally, for the best fit bring the dog along for a fitting.

  • DAX Scooter - Available NOW - Be the first to own the latest in dog scooters!!

    The New 2010 DAX Scooter with full suspension and disk brakes is the next generation of the DAX Scooters and  in dog scooter design. Easy to dismantle and assemble for simple transport and storage. Scootering is a growing sport in this country not only for racing huskies, and other sled dogs, but also for the dog enthusiast who wants to exercise and have fun with their pets. Anyone can do it with almost any dog. Scootering is an ideal way to exercise dogs that have a tendency to pull.

    Dax Scooter

    The

    For many dogs our walking or running speed is just too slow for them and they need something extra. Scootering is a safe and controlled means of keeping up with your fast and exercise hungry dogs, allowing them to run as a team to burn off their excess energy. The size of many commercial, three wheeled 'Rigs' can cause problems for storage and transportation. To combat these issues and to open the sport up to the weekend enthusiast, we've developed a 'Mini-Rig' - A foldable, compact, light weight (14.6Kg), easily maintained version - 'Dax-Scooter' This innovative folding design has good ground clearance, frame and fork suspension, great stability disk brakes and obviously compacts to be stored or transported. Features:
    • Folding Frame and Stem, for easy transport and storage
    • Lightweight, only 14.6Kg
    • Frame damper and Suspension Forks (50mm travel) to help make rough terrain smooth
    • BMX style handle bar & Grips
    • 180mm Mechanical Disk brakes
    • 20" Quick Release Wheels
    • Deck with Black grip tape covering
    • Quick Release Stainless steel ‘Brush-Bow'.

    The removable Brush-Bow is a stainless steel ‘wheel-guard’. This essential addition to the design provides a safe and secure means by which to attach your dogs to the scooter in an attempt to avoid those nasty high speed tug-line wrapped wheel scenarios. It is also easily detached for free-style fun and tricks Watch this space for more information, tips and demos on dog scootering. Follow this link to see more. http://www.innerwolf.co.uk/scooters-rigs-mushing/dax-scooter.html AVAILABLE NOW! Watch this space for pictures and footage of the scooters in action!

6 Item(s)