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Old 09-17-2015, 11:59 AM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Backpacks while walking and hiking

Hi All.

So I read throughout google and here but I am still not sure if it is safe for my puppy Cannoli to use a backpack. So I need some advice.

I started hiking with him since the weather is changing and the Oceans are getting colder. I hike with him without the weighted harness so far.

So this week I bought him an awesome K-9 tactical backpack called Signature K9 Modular Ultimate Load Bearing Harness made by Ray Allen. Ray Allen makes dog equipment for police K-9 units, military, and special forces. I bought some mollies (bag attachments to the loading harness)so that he can carry his treats and water.

My question is when is too young for him to carry weight? The weight of the harness and items that I put in it = 6 lbs. Cannoli weights about 53 lbs and is 9 1/2 months old.. So I go back and forth and make it less than 5lbs. Trying to aim for 10% of his weight. Cannoli has no problems walking with the harness loaded up to 5lbs.

He looks fully grown to me. The last few months I have not seen him grow at all. I don't plan to walk him for hours on this harness. Like maybe a 30-50 minute walk. I keep reading about the impact of this on his joints as he might still be growing.

This reeminded me of when i was 10 and 11 years old. I carry a heavy back up to school 5 times a week. I had to climb a hill with my heavy backup which was about a 15-20 minute walk to the bus stop for many years and it never impacted by growth.

Anyway here is a picture of my pup with the harness loaded. What say you all?
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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It seems that most people recommend waiting until your dog is 18 months old before
allowing him to carry any amount of weight in a backpack. Even though he looks fully grown,
from now until then he is still growing which includes the joints and the hardening of his bones.
Have you asked your vet what his thoughts are.

Once he is of the correct age, then it is recommended between 10 - 20 percent of body weight
depending on the size of your dog. Someone did suggest to freeze the
water bottles so that the water is cold when you go to use it. I thought that a good
idea. They said about four normal size bottles. Do make sure that his backpack fits well.
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Old 09-17-2015, 10:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gazar View Post
It seems that most people recommend waiting until your dog is 18 months old before
allowing him to carry any amount of weight in a backpack. Even though he looks fully grown,
from now until then he is still growing which includes the joints and the hardening of his bones.
Have you asked your vet what his thoughts are.

Once he is of the correct age, then it is recommended between 10 - 20 percent of body weight
depending on the size of your dog. Someone did suggest to freeze the
water bottles so that the water is cold when you go to use it. I thought that a good
idea. They said about four normal size bottles. Do make sure that his backpack fits well.
After much debate I opted out of him carrying water and other heavier stuff. Instead I bought two small condor molle pouches that are super light and the length of a pen. One for each of his side. One will carry my phone and the other will carry my wallet and keys. Expected weight is less than two pounds!

Once he reaches 18 months I will use the bigger pouches that hold water containers
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Old 09-17-2015, 11:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Sounds like a good idea.
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Old 09-18-2015, 11:47 AM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Yes 18 months is the accepted age. That's generally when the growth plates have closed.
I just got one for my dog as he is turning 18 months in October, the vet advised me to give it a month more afterwards to be certain and to start very slowly.
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Old 09-18-2015, 02:05 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Contibull View Post
Yes 18 months is the accepted age. That's generally when the growth plates have closed.
I just got one for my dog as he is turning 18 months in October, the vet advised me to give it a month more afterwards to be certain and to start very slowly.
Oh man...It sucks when you are so excited to try new things with your dog but his age holds him back.

Just reading about hiking and realized that I have to be careful with him on that too! Ha obviously I don't plan to hike him all day long but just a couple hours..
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Old 09-18-2015, 11:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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I know it is hard to wait, but you can still do lots with him to get him prepared for it.
It was suggested by another member that when training let him get used to a light
weight pack and put a couple of empty water bottles in there. Then just take him for a
walk so that he can get used to the feel of a backpack on him. Have fun.
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Old 09-19-2015, 05:59 AM   #8 (permalink)
 
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oh what fun. i would love to have a dog that could do those kinds of things.
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Old 09-20-2015, 12:42 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cowsmom View Post
oh what fun. i would love to have a dog that could do those kinds of things.
Yeah I originally wanted a traditional English bulldog but I lucked out having an OEB. I don't think that I would be having this much fun with a regular English.

Cannoli just loves his vest
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Old 09-20-2015, 11:23 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Yes, the English Bulldog does have a lot of breathing issues and not very keen on
exercise. Somehow, we usually get the dog that is meant for us.
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