Dirty Dogs - How to K-9 Customize your ATV

by admin on 06-12-2014 in Hunting

If you're an ATV enthusiast, there's a good chance you're the compass toting, fun in the sun, problem solving adventurer who can't get enough of the outdoors. Chances are equally good you have a pooch who loves the outdoors as much as you do. For those adventurers who ever wished you could take your best friend along on those long ATV adventures to the middle of nowhere, keep reading. With a few easy customizations, and a couple preparatory steps before you leave, you'll be able to carry that furry friend safely and securely to your favorite hunting stand, fishing hole, or desolate recreation area next time you get that itch to get away.

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First Thing's First

In order to carry your pooch safely on the back of your ATV, you'll need to attach a carrier to the rear of the machine so the dog can ride comfortably and safely. Pre-made custom dog carriers are available many places, and usually can be found for around $120.00. The carrier will need to attach to a rack, available either locally or at an online ATV parts store. If you're the type who'd rather fabricate one from scratch, look for a metal bin about 2-3 times the size of the dog you intend to carry. Make sure your particular ATV is large enough to facilitate bolting a rack of appropriate size to the rear without significantly altering your center of gravity or ability to operate the vehicle safely. Light metals, such as aluminum, usually work best for this type of carrier. If you're able to find a crate that fits the bill, all the better. Otherwise you'll need to do some light welding to fabricate the appropriate size and shape for your box.Once you have your basket made, use netting or wire to run between the bars of the basket, creating a safety net to ensure your pooch keeps its paws and tails inside the vehicle at all times. Once that's done, throw some pillows or other plush material down and make sure you have a way of keeping it from moving around too much during the ride. There are a variety of effective ways to mount your carrier to your machine, depending on the model ATV and the materials available, but the most common method is to use metal mounts which can be either welded or fastened to the rear rack on your ATV. There are a variety of mounts that bolt-on and will effectively mount to your rack.

You're Not Done Yet

Now that you've fabricated a safe means of travel for your K-9, you need supplies. Like you, your dog is going to require a lot of water if it's going to be active and outdoors all day long, especially if it's hot and sunny. Make sure you pack enough food and water(along with bowls to serve them in) for the trip. Never let your dog drink from standing water or any water source on the trail that you don't completely trust. 

Use Sound Judgment

Given the choice most of our loyal friends will always choose to come along wherever we're going, even if it may be unwise. Know your animal. Is it the type of dog that is physically capable of being outdoors and active for an 8-10 hour day? Is the dog well trained? Can he or she be counted on to follow your commands? Is your dog chipped in case you are separated and your pooch gets lost? Has your dog been on a trip similar to this before? If not, perhaps a short day trip is best to start to see how your animal responds before committing to an overnight or extended adventure. These are all things to consider when thinking about taking your best friend along for the ride. After a bit of prior planning and preparation, you can safely carry your best friend along for the ride on your next ATV excursion. Combining two things you love when done safely, can never be a bad thing!

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