Just like human beings’, dogs also require an adequate amount of exercise. Lack of exercise is one of the major reasons which can lead to obesity and other diseases coming along with it. The behaviour of your dog can also change due to lack of exercise leading to physical boredom.
As we all know that life has been busy for all of us and these days people don’t have much time to monitor their dog’s physical strengths and that they are getting proper exercise or not.
That’s where the idea of a dog treadmill fits in! A dog treadmill can be an energy booster for your dog as well as help him improve his physical and mental state completely.
Dog treadmills can be a good outsource for puppies who need to utilize their energy or for overweight dogs or dogs which are highly active. No matter what your cause is a dog treadmill can be a good idea to channelise your dog’s energy and get him fit with it.
Types of Dog Treadmills
There are a variety of treadmills available in the market but, these dog treadmills are mainly classified into two main categories which are:
- Electric treadmills
- Manual treadmills
Electric Dog Treadmill
When you go for a workout in a gym or fitness centre you find treadmills that are motorized and work through power. here you can control the speed and height of the incline on your own.
These types of treadmills are also available when searching one for your dog. These treadmills range from 1000$ to 5000$ according to their size and other features available in different brands and models.
The only problem with these treadmills is that they are that the expensive ones do not support the natural gait of the dog.
Manual Dog Treadmills
These types of treadmills come in two categories a slat mill or a carpet mill dog treadmill
Slat Mill Dog Treadmill
- The slatmill consists of multiple slots that are combined in a loop and it is arranged on a set of rollers.
- This type of treadmill has side barriers with an attachment on the top so that the dog remains on the treadmill and does not indulge in any injury.
- The treadmill allows the dog to control the speed as the roller only moves when the dog moves with it.
- In some brands, you may find a treadmill that has a speed-o-meter as well as the time tracker.
- Slatmill may cost you around 800$-4000$.
Carpet mill Dog Treadmill
- A carpetmill is also entirely operated by the dog and looks almost similar to a slat mill.
- The only difference between the two is that carpet mill is made up of wood, even the bed of the mill is also created out of wood.
- There are no metal parts involved in this type of treadmill.
- This type of dos treadmill is not as free as the slat mill and the dog has to put in a lot of effort to move the bed of the mill.
- Carpet mills can be easily bought up in the range of $400-$600.
How to Design a Dog Treadmill?
Dog treadmills these days are quite lighter in weight than they used to be and consist of 3 parts mainly the frame, roller, and the belt. If you want to build a treadmill at your place, then here are a few steps and guidelines you should take care while you build a dog treadmill manually
Measure your dog
- To know the possible length of the track, measure your dog in such a way that her legs are extended in the longest way with back straight and the dog has to be laid on the side.
- After you take the measurement make sure to add 20% to the measurement. While you note down the measurements make sure that your dog doesn’t get hurt.
- To measure the width of the track mover her to standing position and measure the width of her chest and then multiply the result by 1.5.
- The width of your track should be measured by keeping the dog in the standing position and measure the dog from bottom to the top also make sure to add at least 5 inches to your result.
Design the frame
- You can use metal or wood to create a frame for the dog treadmill and make sure to add the side rails to protect your dog from going off track.
- If you wish to create an inclined treadmill for your dog then, you might add notches to set the difficulty for the dog.
- You can buy plywood which measures exactly according to the dog’s measurement and are ¼ thicker.
- Make sure that you get the right amount of raw material in the right measurements to avoid any kind of confusion later.
- Use 2*4s which should be extended up to 5 inches more and create a frame that will support the front and the back of the track.
- With the help of a hammer and some nails bring the parts together to create a frame.
- You can also create a dog leash for your pet so that the dog does not fall off track.
Finalise the roller system
- You have to decide what kind of roller system you would like to use in the dog treadmill.
- Keep the width in between 15-18 inches unless you have a very small dog.
- You can create a simple roller which is made of up a PVC pipe filled with some foam and cover it with plastic to form a base.
- You have to place the large-sized rollers at each end of the frame whereas the short-sized rollers have to be placed along the length.
Turn for the belt
- After when you have created a structure of the dog treadmill, it’s time for you to find out a belt on which your dog will run.
- Belts for a dog treadmill can be taken from old gym equipment or human-powered machines.
- You need to choose a belt which is according to how big your dog is. Approximately you may need a belt of 10 feet.
- To ease up your work you can simply purchase a gravity roller section from any conveyor company.
- Make sure that the belt is tight enough to work correctly
- If you are searching out for options which ease up your work and does not require so much manpower, then you can use old treadmills and modify them into a dog treadmill according to your needs.
How is a Dog Treadmill different from that of a human one?
Dogs have a walk on four legs whereas humans walk on 2, so, the way we train up our dog buddies is entirely different than what we do for training humans.
The running surface or the belt of a dog treadmill is supposedly shorter than of a normal treadmill. There might be a possibility that the length of the belt is larger or equal to 70”, depending on how big the dog is.
Another major and the most important difference is the side panels which are involved in a dog treadmill.
Side panels help the dog to stay focused and on track, this way the dog has fewer chances of injury and hurting himself due to distraction.
Dog treadmills are far simpler in nature than the traditional treadmills because unlike the human’s dogs do not need multiple functions and specifications that will help them run better on a treadmill.
These types of treadmills just focus on its primary function and that is helping the dog get fitter and increasing its stamina to another level.
Dog treadmills do not require any kind of handrails, water bottle holder, fans, music player, fancy consoles or touch screens which human needs.
A dog treadmill typically weighs for about 80-90 pounds whereas a human treadmill will definitely weigh around 400 pounds.
You can always use the human treadmill for your dog is you want to avoid the hassle which is to make a dog treadmill but, you will have to make some improvisations to that treadmill and make it fit for your dog to run on it without any risks of injury.