Your high energy Husky was bred to pull, but if you live in the city or suburbs, and not on the tundra, his natural pulling talents can go to waste. Your Husky needs exercise, lots of exercise, and even if you are athletic and take your Husky for lots of runs, you will be hard-pressed to match his stamina and speed and provide him with the exercise he craves.
One possible solution that is becoming popular with owners of big, high energy dogs like Huskies is teaching them to pull a bike. Sometimes called urban mushing or bikejoring, teaching your Husky to pull you on a bike can be the perfect solution to exercise your dog and utilize his natural pulling ability. Huskies are working dogs, and giving them an outlet to allow them to perform the job they were bred for is good for them physically and mentally. Besides, having your Husky pull you on a bike could be a great way to get around and save gas money!
Make sure your Husky is mature and that his joints and muscles have developed so that they do not experience excessive strain pulling a bike, resulting in your dog becoming injured. Huskies are large dogs that are well suited in size and conformation to pull, but they should be fully developed before introducing pulling activities. Most Huskies are eager and willing to pull a bike but you should assess your pet's aptitude for this, there are always exceptions to the rule.
You will need to obtain a well fitting harness appropriate for pulling a bike. The harness should distribute weight over your Husky's breastbone, not his neck. Acquire appropriate equipment from a supply store that caters to urban mushing to ensure that the harness will not injure your dog and fits and distributes pulling weight appropriately. Some harnesses are also equipped with spring attachments to attach to your bike and allow for some give when your dog pulls your bike.
You may want to teach your Husky typical mushing commands prior to hitching your dog up to your bike, like 'gee' for turn right, 'haw' for turn left, 'stop' or 'whoa', 'slow', 'leave it', 'on by', and 'hike' for go. That way, he'll be familiar with commands and you have a verbal method to direct your dog before you entrust your Husky to start pulling you on a two-wheeler. You can use these commands to direct your dog when he is pulling you as a passenger on your bike to avoid obstacles and provide control.
Make sure you use appropriate equipment that will not put strain on your dog. The harness should distribute weight evenly over the breast and not put pressure on your Husky's neck. You do not want to use choke, pinch or halti collars, which could injure your dog. Remember, this activity is supposed to be fun for your dog as well as you. Avoid using punishment when teaching your dog bikejoring. You may correct your dog, especially if safety is an issue, but avoid yelling and do not lose your temper or patience with your Husky.
When out on a bike pulling excursion, make sure you take water for your Husky and keep an eye on him to make sure he doesn't become overexerted. A Husky may be motivated to run and pull beyond safe physical limits and your dog needs to be monitored for signs of strain. Appropriate bike harnesses, sometimes with bungees or springs affixed to reduce strain on your dog, and you on your bike, are available from supply stores that specialize in urban mushing or you can rig this yourself. You should also ensure you are wearing a bike helmet. Knee, elbow and wrist guards are also recommended as spills during training can happen. Be sure to invest in high-quality gear--do your research, it will be well worth it.