Bicycling continues to grow in popularity and so is spending more quality time (and money) with Fido. How can a dog parent spend more outdoor time with their canine-child? Biking, of course, and a solution to safely bike with a dog is Bike Tow Leash. It’s a 1.2 lb dog-cycling bike attachment approved as a safe dog-biking product from the American Pet Association. It’s also APA approved for trikes, mobility scooters and chairs.
Recently, I met Mike Leon of Orlando, Fla., creator of Bike Tow Leash during Global Pet Expo in Orlando. I saw the device in action on a bicycle, wheelchair and a Scootaround Scooter and have to say, pretty nifty. [Sidebar: Global Pet Expo is the pet industry’s largest annual trade show.]
What the Heck is this Dog-Cycling Bike Attachment?
The best way to describe it is a bar with a curve (almost looks like a walking cane) that attaches to a fat-tire bicycle’s back wheel’s boxing. It extends out and away from the bicycle with a clip to attach to your dog’s collar which allows some flexibility. The Bike Tow Leash uses patented technology to replace potential tipping with a forward motion. Tipping is a potential hazard with other bicycling-with-your-dog options.
Back when I had a canine, I recall attaching the leash to the base of my seat or around my handlebars and it didn’t go so well for me or the dog. Attaching a dog’s leash to the base of the seat, the dog can easily tip the rider over which can result in injuring the rider and/or dog. Plus, leashes can sometime get caught in a bike’s moving parts resulting in injury or worse. Attaching the leash to my handlebars also resulted in tipping as well as entanglement.
How Did He Think of a Dog-Cycling Bike Attachment?
Mike Leon and his family fostered dogs to become service animals and months before 9/11, he was injured and unable to work. Following 9/11, the former aviation engineer found himself with more time on his hands and searching for a solution to a problem: a convenient way to walk his dog while riding his bike.
He quickly learned tying the leash to the bike could result in the bike being pulled down by a dog and its leash could easily get tangled with the bike’s moving parts. He began working on the pole-like device and perfected it before making it available for sale in 2009. In 2008, because his wife Betty began using a wheelchair, he experimented with using the bar on the chair.
Mike told me traveling with his wife in a chair can be difficult. He recounted a recent trip his family took to Denver and Rocky Mountain National Park. Departing the airport was frustrating but standing at the base of an uphill trail in the national park could have resulted in disappointment. Betty, who has a service dog, was able to reach the of the trail to enjoy the scenery because of the Bike Tow Leash attachment. Family members pushed but her dog helped propel the chair up the hill. Without that pooch-power, they wouldn’t have made it to the top of the trail.
Although the Bike Tow Leash dog-cycling bike attachment is pretty much one-fits-all for bikes, for trikes, mobility scooters and chairs, it may take a little customization which Mike is happy to assist with.
Bike Tow Leash is currently available online and retails for $146. This dog-friendly bicycle attachment is made in the U.S.A. and is a great way to safely bike with your pooch. Visit the product’s website, www.biketowleash.com, for additional information. Be sure you have your veterinarian’s approval before using the product to ensure your dog is physically capable of keeping pace.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links in order to maintain this site and support my traveling habit. Opinions are my own.