The pup-mobile

With both of us working, and with the days getting shorter, walking the dog poses some challenges. One of the reasons we chose our apartment is that it is within walking distance of a terrific dog park. I’d been taking the dog to the park daily over the summer, getting up early before the heat settled in. Now that the weather is cooling, we can go in the evening after work without burning our pup’s paws on the hot sidewalk. But dog walks now happen in the dark. I wake up at 5:45 AM to walk her before work, but I stick to our complex and the people park next door. Both are well-lit and have people milling about so I feel rather safe. I bring along a flashlight since the walks are now entirely before sunrise.

At night, the bf and I have been walking to and from the dog park together. I won’t walk alone, as the stretch between my complex and the dog park is undeveloped land surrounded by fencing. Since the day we moved in, I’ve noted a few areas that appear to be perfect for a homeless encampment. (Years as a single woman living alone leave me predisposed to notice all areas where there might be people or dangers hiding.) One evening, as I pointed out one such area to the bf, we both saw a little light flicker. It seems that there is indeed some activity there, whether it be a homeless person living there, kids hiding out doing something they shouldn’t, or some other activity best left to the dark night. So we have agreed that walking the dog alone in the dark is a bad idea.

It seems so lazy to drive to the dog park, though. Plus, there are not enough parking spaces for everyone as it is. Driving feels safer, and it saves time otherwise spent walking (the walk is about 15 minutes each way, making dog park time 1/2 hour longer each night). Some nights I can get to the dog park during the light, and I can text the bf to drive past and pick us up on the way home. But most nights our schedules don’t work that way.

Enter the pup-mobile.

Yes, we bought a dog carrier. Actually, we bought a child carrier for the bf’s bike, and we use it to shuttle the dog to the dog park. It saves time, gives us exercise, keeps us from using gas, and eliminates the parking issue. I was quite skeptical and didn’t really like the one the bf chose. But since he is the one using it, I let him choose it and buy it. And I am so happy to say I was wrong about the pup-mobile. It’s terrific.

Despite my fears about it, the dog sits calmly in the pup-mobile, strapped into the seat with her car restraint. We took it slowly, and we’ve only gone the short distance to the dog park so far. She even let us put the waterproof cover over it when it rained as we left the park. She sat calmly inside it as we rode home. Amazing! We can’t wait to take the pup-mobile on longer rides. We can bike to PetSmart with her or take her to other parks. We can bring our bikes on trips if there is a trail available, and we can bring the dog along. It’s pretty exciting stuff in our household.

The only downside is that, like the car, she can get a little motion sick. When she rode with the cover on the trailer, she got out after our ride and got a bit sick. I think that as long as we can keep the cover off so that she can see the road ahead, she won’t get sick again.

Pics coming soon! Lately we ride at night, so I don’t have any photos of the pup-mobile.

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Filed under Dog ownership, Life in Coachella Valley, Productivity

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