Dog walking + cross-country skiing = Skijoring
“Skijoring” originated in Norway. The Norwegian word skikjøring literally means “ski driving.” The human (on skis) wears a harness that is connected to the harness of the dog and the dog just is free to run forward. It’s like a cousin to sledding, minus the whips and the reins, making the sport it a far pleasant experience for the dog.
Is Skijoring For Your Dog?
While many dogs love running through the sn0w, skijoring is of course best suited to medium-large sized athletic dogs. You can tell by their enthusiasm, how into it they are. A dog with a more docile temperament might be less inclined to pull their pet parent through the snow. There are of course common sled dogs who will take it very easily. These include huskies, malamutes, and other cold-weather breeds.
The Snowless Alternative
You don’t need to have snow to enjoy this sport. In hotter areas, you can try “skatejoring” or “urban mushing” as it’s known as well. Instead of skis you can just use rollerblades or skateboard, and with the same harness, you can do the street version. These activities are perfect because they bring a dog and humans together for fun outdoor activities. Skatejoring instructor Liz Parrish explains why ski- and skate-joring are such great activities for dogs: “Just like people, dogs want a purpose and to participate.” There are so many fun sports to do with your dog. We are sure that soon there will be water skiing with dogs. Although that could be pretty dangerous. For now, at least you settle with skijoring or skatejoring!