Teach a Dog to Treadmill
A professional dog handler introduced me to a treadmill for dogs. The man traveled the country in an RV with a Pug he showed professionally. To keep the dog in first rate shape, a must for show dogs, he taught her how to use a treadmill designed and sized for small dogs
It was a hoot to watch her but when you picked her up, you realized quickly that it really worked to build muscle. My friend had a human treadmill and worked right along side her.
Of course this is a luxury item but if you live in an area with a harsh climate or aren't able to exercise your dog to the extent he needs, a treadmill is a good option.
Why one made for dogs and not just your treadmill? The ones made for dogs are smaller, lighter weight (so they are easier to store when not in use) and most importantly, have protective shields on the side so your dog doesn't fall off.
If you use buy one, let your dog get used to it without turning it on. Put a treat on it and let him climb on it to get the treat.
When he's fine with it just sitting there, turn it on and let him hear it. Finally, start a minute or so at a time to have him on it. As your dog seems to settle in, increase the time he's on it and the speed.
Some people like to put a harness and leash on their dog and attach the leash to the treadmill. Whatever you do, do NOT use a collar and attach a leash to that. Obviously that could be a choking hazard for your dog. I prefer to take a couple weeks and train the dog so he can be on a treadmill without a harness or leash.
Regardless of which model you get, I recommend this DVD for tips on how to train your dog: PetZen DogTread Instructional Dog Treadmill Training DVD
This is the most popular model and won a pet products award in 2009 when it was introduced.
The only downside to this one is that assembly is a major effort, and one person might have trouble doing it alone.
If you can get past that (or pay to have it assembled), it's a top rated product but smaller than the other brands.
- Quiet motor
- About 2-1/2 feet of running area
- Can go up to 3-miles per hour
- Programmable distance and resistance
- Training guidelines included
- 70 pounds
You can read more reviews of this product here: PetZen reviews
A little larger and heavier than the PetZen above but with more bells and whistles.
- Programmable display for speed, time, and distance
- Three-way incline adjustment
- Can go up to 5-miles per hour
- Safety collar clip stops machine if dog slips or falls
- Locking front wheels for easy portability
- One year warranty
- 176 pounds
This is a good alternative for larger or more active dogs. This one handle a dog up to 60-pounds but also handles higher speeds than the two previous treadmills and has remote control.
The benefits of this style:
- Almost 4-feet of running area
- Can go up to 8-miles per hour
- Programmable distance and time
- Incline can be adjusted from 0% to 9%
- Collapsible canvas side panels
- Recessed treat hold
- Remote control
- Wheels for transporting
- 130 pounds
Heavy and expensive, it also comes with an expensive shipping cost but you will feel you got something for your money.
Benefits of this one:
- Manually adjustable incline levels
- 3-window display tracks time, speed, and distance
- Perspex (solid transparent plastic) sides
- Space-saving foldable design
- Can go up to 6.2-miles per hour
- Folds up for easy storage
- Safety key that stops the treadmill if removed (similar to human type)
- Enclosed motor design to prevent hair buildup
- 300 pounds
For even more savings, use this Amazon.com link:
At least 70% off dog supplies