Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Dogs and Bikes Collide (Well...metaphorically anyway!)

I know we promised this video over a month ago, and here it finally is! We introduce you to…dogs and bikes 101! When the weather is even mildly warm (you know, above 45 degrees!), this is one of Louie’s favorite ways to get his exercise in (and Rudy tries his best to make it around the block on occasion!).

Let me introduce you to the stars of the video…these two are like our children!
Louie is our 2-year-old Mutt. He is 62 pounds of sculpted muscle and pure power. This dog was truly built for speed – his rear end is slightly higher than his shoulders, so he can tuck his head, put his ears back, and cut through the air as he runs. He’s sleek, with super-short hair making him more aerodynamic. And did I mention the muscles? Since we took him in almost 2 years ago as a sickly 8-week-old puppy (as a FOSTER dog…yes, we failed!), he has had these hind legs that look like a steroid-popping body builder’s!  Ready for cuteness overload?  Here's baby Louie right after we brought him home - see, I told you he was a sickly, skinny little thing!:
Rudy, our 6-year-old Puggle (that’s a Pug mixed with a Beagle, though the Beagle really shows through in his mixture), has gotten slightly pudgy in his old age, but still tries to keep up with his brother when he’s feeling spry. No, I can’t take them both out on bike runs together, Rudy would never keep up! So I usually take Louie for about 1.25 miles, then come home and take Rudy about a quarter of a mile around the block, sometimes about a half mile if he’s feeling up for it, though I usually end up nearly dragging him home at the end. He starts out like a sprinter, and has no endurance!  And more cuteness's Rudy as a young man, the perfect Puggle :):
I actually started out exercising our family dog via bicycle when I was about 14. My dad took the dog out for runs this way, and then it became part of my job. It’s easy to get used to, and a great way to exercise dogs who need to expend quite a bit of energy when you don’t have the yard space to let them run like banshees. They also have dog park passes and love to run free and socialize, but that involves loading up and driving to the park, which sometimes involves quite a bit of time that we just don’t have – especially in the Fall and Winter when it gets dark so darn early. And heck, humans can even participate in this one when we’re tired – I don’t even pedal most of the time with Louie, he does all the work, just like a sled dog!

I have a computer on my bike, and have clocked Louie running at about 21.5 miles per hour. To put that in perspective, the average human runs about 5-7 miles per hour. And as I mentioned, I’m not helping him out any by pedaling, so he’s pulling 30 pounds of bike and an undisclosed amount of human pounds behind him! And Rudy has been clocked at a top speed of around…9 miles per hour. Not bad for a stocky guy with short legs :)

So there they are, our sons!  And...I managed to kind of relate this post to bikes!