I few months ago a friend found 7 used scooters advertised on Kijiji. I've wanted to try dog scootering for quite a few years but the cost of the scooters always put me off and then once Coulee's feet became diseased, there was no point in pursuing it. But now with Summit it is a possibility again.
So I bought a scooter. It was used at a kid's camp so it was a little worse for wear but for the price it was still a great deal. I took it in for a tune up and new tubes and it was good to go.
We went out twice when I first got it. Just to try it out and to introduce it to Summit. I wanted to make sure he wouldn't be afraid of me barrelling down behind him. He's still too young to pull so I basically propel myself while he runs along in front. Which means we go really slowly. :)
After a few months of inactivity, we went out again last night and this morning. I'm still doing 99% of the work but there were a few times when he got a burst of speed and pulled me along behind him - usually when he was chasing a bird on the path or straining to get to the people in front of us.
I'm not really sure how to train this sport. At the moment I'm just encouraging him to run. He has lots and lots "squirrel" moments which is just fine as I need time to catch my breath. But eventually I'd like him to stay focused on the trail and just keep moving. Hopefully I won't screw anything up before then.
See that little blip of inactivity at around the 10 minute mark? That was me lying on the ground in agony - I was walking next to the scooter and managed to step in a gopher hole and twist my ankle. While lying there my GPS kindly gave me my 10 minute "update" and let me know that my current speed was 0 km/hr. Way to kick a girl when she's down. It doesn't hurt to walk on it but it did hurt to use that leg to push and it is a little swollen so I might need to take it easy for a few days.
My plan is that by the time he is able to actually pull, I'll be in better shape than I am now and we'll make a pretty good team. I have a few months of "training" before he's a year old and I'll feel comfortable letting him take some of the load so it should be doable if I can keep this up.