Over a year ago, Kurgo so generously sent us backpacks for the boys to test out on a hike. I wrote about our experience hiking with the Kurgo backpacks then. Lately, though, the Kurgo pack has been getting a lot of use on our neighborhood walks.
Cooper is an ok walker. He prefers to be a little bit ahead of me, which I’m fine with as long as he isn’t pulling. But the real issue is that he’s jumpy. He’s a “nervous Nellie” in general, and when we’re out and about, his head is swiveling from side to side, scanning his surroundings. He periodically tenses up and freezes. It makes for a very disjointed walk.
But, really, it’s not his fault. I haven’t worked on his walking over the past year, so now that we’re back on track, I’m focused on improving his confidence and his skills.
The first step? Getting him to work hard on our walks!
I put a 2-pound handweight in each of the saddlebags. That 4-pound total is 10% of his body weight. Honestly, it’s like a total transformation: As soon as I clip the bag on his back, his mindset changes. He becomes way more focused and way less jumpy. His walking becomes more fluid.
We also work on his attention. We stop at every street corner for a “sit” and a “watch me” before we cross. I take my trusty can of Easy Cheese, and he gets a steady stream whenever he looks at me, especially when there are dogs/people/bikes going by.
We’re definitely making progress.
The only problem? He won’t poop with the backpack on. Maybe it shifts uncomfortably when he gets in position? Maybe he’s too focused on his “job” to think about his “business”? But, I guess if that’s the only problem we’ve encountered so far, we’re in pretty good shape!
Have you tried a backpack on your walks? What tools or equipment help to improve your walks?