It can be a lot of fun bringing your dog along on a trail ride. Not only is it great exercise, but it gives you a chance to spend quality time with both of your favorite animals. Follow these tips to avoid disaster!
1. Basic Obedience: Your dog should know basic commands, such as sit, come, wait, and get out of the way. You should be able to point in a direction and your dog should move. Since they won’t be on a leash, it’s essential they can follow your commands. Your dog must listen in various environments, as well. Deer, rabbits, and squirrels may show themselves on your trail ride.
2. Dog-Friendly Horse: Your horse must also be obedient. Are they comfortable with dogs running around? Some can get aggressive or anxious. Make sure you properly introduce the two before you go on a ride through the woods.
3. Walk on the Ground: Before you jump in the saddle and go, it’s a good idea to do a test run. Walk your horse with a lead rope and ask your dog to follow along. How do they both response? Your horse should be comfortable with your dog on all sides of them. And your dog should listen to your instructions.
4. Slow and Short Rides: If you’re feeling confident, try a nice and slow trail ride with the two. Keep the pace at a walk and only go for a short trip around. You can gradually build up the length and speed of your rides.
5. Fitness: Monitor your dog’s fitness level, especially when the weather is warmer. They can easily exhaust themselves trying to keep up with your horse.
Trail riding with your dog can be a lot of fun. However, it takes proper planning!
Learn more here: 5 Benefits Of Trail Riding For The Horse And Rider!