Video: Exploring the Relationship Between Rider & Trail Dog in 'Going Nowhere'

Oct 4, 2021 at 14:10
by Kona Bikes  

Another part of the Going Nowhere series.

There’s nothing better than the relationship between rider and trail dog. Kona Ambassador Ben Gerrish may be “the boss” but it’s really Luna who’s in charge. At 11 she’s still giving him a run for his money (and his snacks) on their daily rips! This project was self-filmed by Ben. Face licks were pure improv by Luna.

Luna rides with Ben


  • 52 1
 Just don't push your dogs too hard, check them for injuries, and think about the conditions for them. Dogs are designed for fairly short bursts of fast speed and long periods of jogging speed. Some people are totally oblivious and you see them forcing their dog out on boiling hot days, or for too long rides when the dog is clearly struggling.
  • 10 0
 Seconded, I love riding with mine but she has hurt her paws before (had to carry her half a mile, lucky she's small!) and you see idiots at trail centres with a panting/limping dog behind them all the time. This dog looks happy though!
  • 14 0
 Totally agree.... but I can assure you Luna is well looked after and loving life!
  • 3 0
 @hddnmedia: Oh for sure, she looks like it! Smile
  • 9 1
 Yea I always see people say how the dog likes to keep going, and the dog is always excited to go. But the reality is that you brought your dog into the middle of the woods and it doesn’t want to get left there. Say the dog is tired and doesn’t want to run anymore, what is it supposed to do? Not follow you anymore while you leave it behind in a random place? It has no choice but to keep going.
  • 4 14
flag ihatetomatoes (Oct 6, 2021 at 6:12) (Below Threshold)
 @sino428: My dog would just go home when he was done (or just went chasing something) Luckily I live close to the trails in the area but when he was young it was a 50/50 chance we'd come home together.
  • 4 0
 @ihatetomatoes: irresponsible much?
  • 2 0
 This +100.

Just remember your dog doesn't all the protective padding that you as a rider do. They're making direct contact with all the rocks, roots, sharp sticks...
  • 3 0
 @extratalldirtrider: lol. Ya probably but he was having the time of his life and I'm ok with that, sometimes you gotta let go of responsibility and put fun forward. He's 11 now and doesn't come for rides anymore but those were some of the best days. He could sprint full speed through the forest and keep up while I was pinning it on my bike, was very impressive. He knew all the short cuts and would often just be waiting at the end of the trail for you.
  • 22 3
 Unpopular opinion incoming: I feel as though we should be hesitant to continue the glorification of trail dogs.
I've changed my tune regarding them after having had way too many off leash and out of control encounters with wandering dogs in the wrong place that have zero recall.
Let's do better as dog owners
  • 7 2
 As a dog owner I totally agree with this. It’s even worse when people don’t even try to get their off leash dog out of the way.
  • 10 2
 So what your saying is that people should train and control their dogs, there isn't an issue with trail dogs per se.
  • 12 0
 @rbeach: I don't think there is any issue with trail dogs as an idea, it's the popularity and everyone thinking their dog is a trail dog. My pup is a spaniel, a super energetic hunting breed, but from birth she was skittish and my friend knew she would never make it around guns and such. She is also pretty skittish around bikes and lots of people so she makes poor decisions on where to run. For this reason our off leash adventures in the woods are around few people and not with bikes. Many others don't recognize the reality of their dogs personality and just force them into the role of a trail dog because it is cool.
  • 3 5
 @rbeach: You can train a dog all you want, it will never understand how to behave on bike trails as well as an adult human does and you can't control how other dog owners train theirs but if you're allowed to have your dog on the trails so are they. The solution? No dogs or only dogs on a leash allowed on trails.

I say that as a dog owner who spends about 20h a week walking my dog on trails, always on a leash.
  • 5 1
 @pisgahgnar: And that comes down to people using judgement about the dog on an individual basis, rather than trying to make blanket rules for everyone (which are unenforceable anyway). If a dog hurts someone on a trail then there could be legal consequences for that owner in that instance, but it's not a rule that could be enforced in preventative way.

@MatLax00: What do you mean by trails? How are you going to designate bike trails from anything else? There's no legal separation between bike trails and other types of trail in Canada (except on official trails operated for uplift like at bike parks) right now, and runners/walkers can use them equally with mtb'ers, so how are you going to make the distinction? Or will you say that people can only ever walk their dogs on leads no matter what sort of trail they're on? Just curious how you would create this rule.
  • 2 5
 @rbeach: Yes I'm saying that people should walk their dog on a leash unless they're on a private property. I live right next to the Gatineau park and dogs are either not allowed at all or only on leash and people get fined for not respecting those rules and I totally agree with that.
  • 5 1
 @MatLax00: Then you and I have very different opinions on what people should be allowed to do. There's also a big difference between the outdoors more generally, and highly managed spaces like Gatineau. Thankfully we don't live in your little authoritarian world Wink Don't run for office.
  • 4 1
 *Laughs in Scottish Outdoor Access Code.
  • 1 5
flag MatLax00 (Oct 12, 2021 at 4:44) (Below Threshold)
 @rbeach: Wasn't there a poll on here where the majority of responses were that people had bad experiences with dogs on bike trails in the past?
  • 4 1
 @MatLax00: Lol possibly, but I'm rather happy that we don't legislate based on Pinkbike polls Wink
  • 1 5
flag MatLax00 (Oct 12, 2021 at 5:01) (Below Threshold)
 @rbeach: Your freedom only extends so far as it doesn't infringe on other people's freedom. People should be free to enjoy riding safely and without others getting in their way and that freedom is more important than the freedom of people letting their dog free outside of their property. Letting dogs roam freely on trails where people ride puts both people and dogs at risk because, as I said before, a dog owner can't reason with their dog, can't explain to them why they should act one way or another, they can train them but it doesn't mean they know how they'll react. Allowing one owner to let their dog free means allowing everyone's dog to be free and there's no way to check if all dog are properly trained or not and even when they are, there's no guarantee they won't get in people's way while the owner isn't looking.
  • 5 1
 @MatLax00: Sorry but getting in someone's way is not an infringement on freedom. Aside from that, what you're espousing is responsible access rights, just like we have in Scotland. You keep saying "let their dog free" and "roam free on the trails", which is completely different to having a dog off-lead and under control, which is perfectly possible and many people (myself included) do so. You're still liable if your dog hurts somebody, and because of that you don't do it unless you can safely.
  • 5 1
 @MatLax00: I'll remember that next time I'm in line at a shop, these slow old people are infringing on my freedom. Face it bud, you're a miserable little authoritarian who'd rather punish people in advance than enable people to be responsible themselves and punish them if they aren't.
But thankfully it doesn't matter what you think because you don't affect anything Wink
  • 5 1
 @rbeach: 100%. Imagine you could only walk your dog offlead on private property in the UK, there'd be a national outcry lol
I don't think this guy has any experience of what he's talking about. The usual "rules for other people which won't affect me" mentality. As you say, it doesn't matter anyway.
  • 5 1
 @redrook: I'm just glad I'm not his dog. Imagine only ever being walked on a lead. If anything THAT should be illegal. It's shocking to me that some people are such bad dog owners that they're unable to train their dog to walk off lead. Dogs are supposed to run around and play, you just need to be able to call them back and heel them. If that's hard you shouldn't own a dog. He's got things backwards.
  • 1 5
flag MatLax00 (Oct 12, 2021 at 5:34) (Below Threshold)
 @rbeach: Authoritarian because I favour people safety over pets being allowed to roam free... Holy crap you guys are ridiculous.
  • 5 1
 @MatLax00: Lol no, because you want to ban people from doing something which works perfectly well elsewhere.

Isn't it about time for your on-lead dog walk around a city park townie?
  • 1 6
flag MatLax00 (Oct 12, 2021 at 6:13) (Below Threshold)
 @rbeach: My dog is currently enjoying 3.5ac of forest which is private land I own, he's on leash when we walk on the 180km+ of trails in the Gatineau park because we share those trails with other people, thank you very much. How's that for a "city park townie"?
  • 5 0
 @MatLax00: Lol, so you reveal yourself. So it's ok for you because you own a large area of private land, screw everyone else that doesn't. Gotcha Wink
  • 5 0
 @MatLax00: Let them eat cake eh?
  • 5 0
 @MatLax00: That's how you lose all credibility in one post. Next people shouldn't be allowed to drive unless they drive a Tesla. Oh and Gatineau is full of fricken townies lmafo
  • 1 6
flag MatLax00 (Oct 12, 2021 at 8:26) (Below Threshold)
 @rbeach: They can go enjoy the outdoors just like I do, as I said, about 20h a week with my dog. He gets to be off leash when we're at our cottage, otherwise he's attached to me so he doesn't bother the people around.
  • 5 0
 @MatLax00: I pretty much never walk mine on lead unless it's right near a road, and they don't bother people, but I guess they (and apparently almost every dog here) are super special.
  • 1 5
flag MatLax00 (Oct 12, 2021 at 8:40) (Below Threshold)
 @redrook: And no dog owner will ever say "I knew my dog would attack children." after it happens. You are not your dog, you cannot predict how it will react around others or when faced with a stressful situation like a bike appearing in front of it at high speed it in a blind corner.

And what happens when dogs get hurt because they don't act in a predictable manner? The owner is pissed at the human.
  • 5 0
 @MatLax00: No they can't because you have a large property and most other people don't.

20hrs a week on a leash sounds miserable for your dog. Oh but wait, the cottage, of course everyone can take their dogs to their cottages. But which one, my French gite, my villa in the Pyrenees, or my cabin at my private lake. Tough choice.

You like the rules because they suit you.
  • 5 0
 @MatLax00: How would a dog following a bike have another bike appear in front of it suddenly? And if it's a trail intended for multiple types of user, then it's entirely up to the cyclist to ride safely since they should know there are other trail users. I'm sorry buddy, but your logic makes absolutely no sense. People being pissed at each other is a fact of life, that doesn't mean rights are being infringed, so get over yourself.

As for your bullshit dog attack analogy, most dog attacks happen in the home and involve the owner. If you want to play captain risk assessment, then logically dogs shouldn't be allowed at all.
  • 5 0
 @MatLax00: No driver says "I knew I was going to hit that kid", so logically people shouldn't be allowed to drive, we should all have to go around on rails and little trains. Life involves people making judgements.
  • 5 0
 @redrook: "captain risk assessment" - I. Am. Dying.
  • 5 0
 @rbeach: When someone's logic is this weak all you can do is take the piss lol
  • 1 1
 @redrook: You guys' logic is basically "My dog's freedom > everyone else's freedom"

Talk about sound logic.
  • 1 0
 @MatLax00: Nope, it works very well here where we respect everyone's freedom, no draconian leash rules needed. Pity you need that to keep your dog under control, the rest of us will just be responsible people.
  • 19 3
 Life would be so sad without dogs!
  • 14 2
 People need to be very careful with what they expect their dogs to be able to do. The sustained effort I see loads of people expecting from their dogs is ridiculous. Its one thing expecting a dog to keep up with you out for a run yourself, but making it sprint for miles (accumulative distance) while you are rolling on a bicycle is not what dogs are build to do. Im sure everyone does it with the best intentions, but sadly the dogs are the ones who suffer.
  • 6 2
 Basically what I've said above.
  • 4 1
 For this reason I pretty much exclusively trail run with my dog and do not take her for bike rides. I also don't want her getting in someone's way on the trail so running allows us to go on the lesser used trails for some peace and quiet in the woods. Days with my dog in the woods are about adventuring and exploring, not speed.
  • 6 14
flag ihatetomatoes (Oct 6, 2021 at 6:13) (Below Threshold)
 So many debby downers in this thread
  • 7 2
 @ihatetomatoes: Not really, it's a discussion about dogs on trails and different experiences. You're the only one negging.
  • 8 2
 @ihatetomatoes: Yeah, talking about adventuring and exploring, and looking after your dog, is so being a downer. What a bellend.
  • 6 0
 @ihatetomatoes: People are just looking out for the safety and well being of dogs. Nothing wrong with that. I agree with you on tomatoes though, they're gross.
  • 7 3
 Depends on the dog. I’ve a border collie and a Aussie that are three. The border is built for speed and work. The Aussie, she definitely works more for the same.
I could conserve by preserving, but I won’t. They get uncontrollably excited when I grab my gear or touch my bike. I’m in tune with my pups, I can tell what is too much or when they have bad days, (it happens to them as well.)
They get injured, just like me.
We will take 1 decade full of adventure over 1.5 decades of walks.
If you bought a lab or a doodle- well, enjoy the dog park and coffee shop.
  • 1 0
 @b1k35c13nt15t: I tried with my Aussie but she just couldn’t keep up other than on slower fat bike rides in the snow. She’s stocky and much more on the “cutter” end of the spectrum for Aussies. It definitely depends on the dog but as others have stated (and I’ve seen firsthand) too many people are oblivious and borderline cruel to their dogs. It sounds like you’re in tune with your pups though.
  • 3 1
 @b1k35c13nt15t: 100%, being in-tune with the pup is so important, not just for riding. My almost 2 year old cattle/lab mix loves going for rides, she goes crazy when I get anywhere near the bike or put on any gear. Going on rides with her is definitely different than going on rides with buddies. Frequent stops for water/snack/rest, slower descending speeds, less overall distance and elevation. I try to ensure that after we ride she gets a down day, so usually we won't ride on consecutive days so she can have time to recover as well. She also gets some supplements to help keep her joints healthy over time and some extra treats mixed in with her food after a ride, for recovery as well. Basically treat your dog how you'd like to be treated if you were a dog; eat well, have fun, rest, don't work too hard.
  • 3 0
 @b1k35c13nt15t: You've clearly never owned a lab or a doodle, both working breeds (or combo of) and can be extremely high drive. Our working lab will easily outrun our collie both in terms of speed and stamina.

OP's comment was clearly not aimed at you if you feel you know your dogs well enough to know what's ok for them, the point was that some people clearly don't.
  • 3 0
 @b1k35c13nt15t: It's not about conserving by preserving, it's about when people are obviously oblivious to when their dog isn't coping or is struggling. Nobody is saying don't take your dogs biking. And actually almost every dog needs/wants an active life - utter bollocks about labs, you only see fat ones because idiots make them fat. They are working dogs.
  • 4 0
 @rbeach: A lot of labs have POMC, which means they can't stop eating and affects their metabolism, but yeah any fit, healthy dog (which isn't a toy breed or ruined by inbreeding) is going to happily chase a bike. It's up to the owner to look after them and make sure they aren't going too far, for too long, or getting too hot etc.
  • 7 0
 Awesome video, such skill, poise and talent! Ben isn't bad on a bike either.
  • 2 0
 Pretty wicked she's still out there ripping at her age! My pooch got to 4 before he decided he was done, one day I put on my helmet to go for a ride and he just tucked his tail and went and laid down. Glad he made the decision on his own
  • 2 0
 I use my Garmin primarily for my two labs. I need to know time and distance. I chose trails that are slow and technical for me. The few times I do a fast longer trail I wait a lot for them. And I tend to ride alone with them out on trails not often frequented by others. My average speed for an hour or two is about 6 or 7 kph. The highest speeds will be around 25 or 30 kph but those sections are short. I also go early in the morning when it’s hot or not at all if it’s too hot. I select trails where water in streams and ponds is available.

My labs are bred for agility and work so they are pretty high drive and high energy. Also very robust. And I don’t ride them everyday. They get easy days just like we need to have for recovery.
  • 4 0
 I seriously doubt anyone asked the dog about the soundtrack
Pretty sure he would’ve chosen
Snoopdog instead Pimp
  • 1 0
 I have a Jack Russell I would love to see become a trail dog. I run him and hike with him, on-leash, with no issues, but I think I would be worried sick if I were to ever ride with him. Running him over would be my biggest fear....then of course the wild life like mtn lions and coyotes, which are becoming more active in my area.
  • 2 0
 Luna is getting up in age, go easy on her. They, like us, try to hang on to their younger years, until they can't.
  • 3 0
 Yes Ben
  • 1 0
 Thanks bud!
  • 2 1
 Trail dogs especially need fish oil supplement for their entire lives. Helps them immensely.
  • 1 0
 Fasted trail dog in the North!
  • 1 0
 Just a pair of the UK's finest pinners!
  • 1 0
 Awesome! Local Trails and 2 local legends!
  • 1 0
 Love it! best video in a long time!
  • 2 0
 Best content this week!
  • 1 0
 Nice! Looks like a coyote knocked up a Malinois
  • 1 0
 Man, if we could ever work out what breed she is, she's a super mongrel!!!
  • 1 0
 @hddnmedia: We adopted our "pitbull mix" from a shelter 3 years ago. Thought there'd be some staffie and maybe lab. Nope, Embark DNA test revealed 100% APBT.
  • 1 0
 @hddnmedia, the main question is, one more brew?
  • 1 1
 Came here just to be told how to be a better dog owner… again
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