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Sirius of the Week for May 14 - 20, 2006

Our stars this week are Sky and Bowie, and they are urban mushing dogs! Mark shares some information about them and about their urban mushing.

"Sky (5 years old) is actually a borrowed dog. (Sometimes I pay to rent/use her. She is the good puller.) It only took 15 minutes to get her into the dog system and pulling. She took to it naturally. Bowie (4 years old, I think, but not sure because the pound didn't know), on the other hand is a rescued dog. I had just adopted him, and it took him 5-6 sessions to get him going in the scooter system. He doesn't have the drive to keep the pressure forward, unless I motivate him verbally or through touch. He is the pretty boy, and does keep up with Sky, but he's not really a great puller.

urban mushing
Sky, a white wolf hybrid, and Bowie, a rescued Rottweiller

"We have a river that runs through town, so we go up one side, and usually hide the scooter in the woods and go for a hike up the river. Then we come back and get in the scooter and head down river and back to town where we started. We stop often and I let them out to play, swim, drink, etc. People get a big smile on their faces when they see us. We are famous in our town (these are the most famous 2 dogs in Bend, Oregon). People love seeing dogs do useful work/sport. We do about 4 miles in the scooter, and they run another 4 when we hike. We end up at the coffee shop where they are tied to an outside table. Lots of people who come to get coffee, or are just walking by, stop and pet them. They are very good dogs, well socialized, healthy, and in the prime of their lives. I also let kids and adults try the scooter often. It's so easy to ride that they immediately can take off down the sidewalk, and really enjoy the new sensation of urban mushing.

"When they aren't mushing, Sky and Bowie like to lay around and sleep like most dogs. We go to the dog park occasionally. I buy human-grade beef jerky for them to snack on and several of the people at the coffee shop bring traditional dog treats for them."

You can find out more information and see many photos of the Dog Powered Scooter system at Mark's site.

urban mushing

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