Do you know how awesome dog pulling can be? Well, if you haven’t tried it, you should. All that awesomeness could go wrong however if you don’t get the right equipment or longboard during the initial buying phase.
This post will help you identify the best longboards for dog pulling as well as what to look out for when buying one.
The Following Are Features Of A Good Longboard For Dog Pulling
Dog pulling on a longboard is also referred to as Skatejoring. When doing it, your fate is somehow dependent on the tow rope or leash you are hanging on to, your dog, as well as the state of the equipment you are using. Sharp turns, bumps, cracks, cross-pathing with other animals, rough stretches, your dog’s behaviour are just a few external events that can influence your journey.
When Skatejoring or dog pulling, it is important to remember that you have little control over your ride, so knowing and understanding the specific characteristics your longboard should possess, will come in handy.
Skate Note – the term skatejoring means dog pulling, joring is a Swedish word for pulling.
Four Top Choices For Dog Pulling Or Skatejoring
Below are four best longboards and cruisers for an awesome Skatejoring:
- Loaded Boards Poke
- Globe Big Blazer Complete Longboard
- Arbor Dropcruiser Complete Longboard
- Landyachtz Dropcarve Complete Longboard
All from the above are great longboards for dog pulling, but your choice should depend on your experience, your dog’s behaviour, your riding style and the areas you ride in. Lastly, the duration of your ride should also be considered.
So, what should these longboards possess…
Best Longboards for Dog Pulling on Smoother Surfaces and over Longer Distances
If your planned ride is between three to five miles long, on a smooth surface i.e. long stretches of a straight road – you should get a longboard that is stable at high speeds with reduced turning or steering ability. A longboard like this will help you to maintain your course, no matter the outrageous turns or directions your dog might take.
The Arbor Dropcruiser and the Landyachtz DropCarve are widely renowned for being two high-quality double-drop longboards. They are both are similar in shape and size, having the same size of 38″ and 37″ respectively. The Landyachtz DropCarve is slightly more versatile as it also comes in 40″.
As they are both double drop longboards (with a dropped platform and drop-through truck), they provide ultimate stability due to a very low deck (so low to the ground), which causes the centre of gravity to go even lower at high speeds.
The Arbor Dropcruiser
It has a larger wheelbase of 29.25″, which means establishing more stability at velocity; also, the DropCarve is equipped with large kicks that is great for making swift dodging turns while being dog pulled. The Arbor Dropruiser is built from the sturdy Canadian maple. This longboard also comes with larger wheels of about 70mm, which makes it a better shock absorber.
Also, the Landyachtz DropCarve has a wheelbase 23.9″ and a wheel of 63mm; it is also of lightweight and more flexible being that it is built from the fibreglass and bamboo. The bamboo that is made from also means that it is more expensive than the Arbor Dropcruiser.
It is also a lot more flexible than your typical longboard, this helps increase the comfort levels when Skatejoring over bumps, cracks, and rough stretches.
Skate Note – this particular longboard is easy to carry around.
Both the Arbor DropCruiser and the Landyachtz DropCarve are without a doubt high quality and stable to use. They are also both durable, with responsive RKP trucks, and as such picking between the two is a huge dilemma in itself. Skateboarders who love small jumps and quick turns while Skatejoring, will prefer the Landyachtz DropCarve as their longboard of choice.
Best Longboards for Dog Pulling on Rough Surfaces and in Smaller Spaces
If for instance say you live in an area that has narrow paths, uneven surfaces, many narrow turns and probably bad pavements – your choice for one of the best longboards for dog pulling will be a city cruiser. There are so many quality city cruisers, one of which is the mini-cruiser. It looks very similar to a typical street skateboard and it provides speed and comfort when riding on bumpy, uneven road surfaces.
For Skatejoring through narrow/tight paths or sidewalks and curvy alley, I have always found a mini-cruiser is the best for the job. Although if you use anything smaller than a mini-cruiser, chances are you’ll find it a lot trickier for dog pulling.
How do you know the right size?
A longboard that is a size below or exactly 28.5” is too small for dog pulling (the Landyachyz Dinghy falls under this ‘too small‘ category, even if they are fast, they are just not suitable for dog pulling.
Recommendation: I personally recommend you check out the Globe Big Blazer, a mini-cruiser that comes with a suitable size of 32″. Its wheelbase is also pretty long at 17.5″, accompanied by 62mm wheels and 6″ trucks.
Skate Note– the Globe Big Blazer wheels are quite large relative to the decks. The deck is flat as its nose and a slight concave to allow you to adjust position and stance upon your dog’s pulling, but still, they run comfortably without wheelbite.
One benefit to the Big Blazer is that its wheels do not stick out from either side of the deck, which prevents you from running over or you’re your dog.
The Globe Big Blazer can become unstable at high speeds. It is handy to note this as you may feel some wobbles if your dog runs too quickly. A lot of this is because the steering is quite loose, so it’s more responsive to sharp, swift turns or sudden change in the direction made by your dog.
So it’s important that you practice at being good using a board like this and skateboarding in general.
At times when your dog stops to do dog stuff like sniffing around, You are able to fit in a number of tricks as well – kick turns, crack hopping and ollies – until your dogs start pulling again.
Alternative Dog Pulling Longboard Choice for High-Speed Surfaces
The Loaded Poke is a premium alternative longboard for Skatejoring, precisely urban dog pulling over high-speed surfaces.
The advanced construction in the design is easily seen in its 34” length and wheelbase of 20.75” which makes ultra-stable at high velocity. The Loaded Poke shares similar characteristics with the Big Blazer, and while it is slightly more expensive, its features are worth every extra penny that you spend on it.
Some of these features include;
- being lightweight
- stable at high speed
- high-tech equipped, concave and wheel flares to secure your feet and balance
- superb kick tails for curb hops and swift turns.
And yes, while it does have a topmount design, the rocker on its deck means that you’ll always be much lower to the ground. It easily doubles up as an ideal commuting choice for days when you leave the dog at home and need to get to work. You should definitely check out the Loaded Poke before deciding on which longboard to go for.
Picking the right Dog Lead and Dog Harness for Skatejoring
As stated in the beginning, to complete the full circle, you don’t just need the right skateboard and experience (practice) but also the right equipment.
There are harnessing systems specifically designed for dog pulling. This is because there’s a chance that using a regular dog collar or lead could damage your dog’s windpipe.
So what should you use…?
Well, there are systems design for this kind of activities which includes:
- A harness
- A towline
- A hip belt (for the skateboarder)
Recommendation: The Ruffwear brand designs some of the best Skatejoring equipment available. Some of its key features include its broad-angle action and quick release ability. It is a high-end dog harness option, but you do get what you pay for with the Ruffwear brand.
If you are after a lower-priced affordable option then this separate dog harness is a good alternative.
Other recommendations when purchasing your Skatejoring equipment include the following;
Knee and Elbow Pads: Pro-Tec street pack
Slide Gloves: Loaded Freeride Longboard Slide gloves or Goatskin Race Slide Gloves
Tips for Skatejoring or Longboard Dog Pulling
- Ensure you have your longboard helmet and pad on, whenever you ate Skatejoring / dog pulling.
- Try not to roll over your dog with your longboard.
- Teach your dog how to act in crowded areas i.e. teach to heel and walk.
- Try not to put your hands in the leash’s end loop, just in case of a fall. You might need to catch yourself with your arm, which will be indisposed if it’s within the leash’s loop.
- Teach your dog how to stay steady when turning; you both could practice this together.
- To prevent injuries on your dog’s back and paws, try to keep up with his pace.
- To assume control of your dog pulling or Skatejoring, teach/train your dog to stop or slow down at your command.
- Never ride in front of your dog as his next direction might be unknown, this can pull you off your longboard.
- All distance covered should be according to your dog’s capability, do not exceed or overstress your dog.
Skatejoring or dog pulling – whichever you like to call it – is an awesome activity for you and your dog, but things could go wrong if you don’t pick the right longboard, area or practice and train your dog.
Lastly, make sure that you get the correct gear for your dog and for yourself to help reduce the chances of you suffering serious injury!