Carry me home
Every small dog owner will have had to carry their dog at some point as their little legs can often get tired after a couple of hours of walkies. While it’s possible to simply carry your dog in your arms, it is much more comfortable for both dog and owner to use a sling. There are a number of things to take into consideration when choosing a sling to ensure the best fit all round.
Why do you need a sling?
Obviously, dogs love to walk, run and play and these are the main ways that our hounds stay fit and healthy. Even if you have a smaller breed, we would encourage you to ensure that they get plenty of walkies time. With that said, there are times when we all need to carry our pooch, whether that be because the terrain is too difficult; the distance too long; your dog has health problems or is elderly; you’re travelling on public transport; you’re shopping; or indeed you’re taking them for their puppy vaccinations and you can’t put them down where other dogs have been.
Well-being and health benefits
Studies have shown that having your hound with you can lower blood pressure, reduces cholesterol and can even contribute to overall heart health. By using a dog sling, you are not just with your pup, you are close to them too. It’s reported that if you suffer from stress or having a pup in a sling can improve the owner’s quality of life. The close physical proximity a sling provides is a great way to bond with your dog, especially if you have a puppy, as it can help them feel secure and comfortable, particularly if you have a nervous or timid pup. A sling will also provide the kind of den-like shelter that dogs naturally seek for comfort.
Comfort is key
Dog slings are made to support your dog and keep them in a comfortable position without adding any strain to your own back or shoulders, and they do this by distributing the weight evenly. Look for a carrier with a wide strap that sits well across your shoulders and plenty of fabric to wrap around your hound so that it’s not too tight or restrictive.
TOP TIP: When introducing your dog to a sling for the first time, use little and often in the beginning and this will make sure your pup gets used to the sling and won’t be afraid of it.
We recommend choosing a carrier that is made for your practicality as well your dog’s. Mobile phones have become our constant companions so finding a carrier with a phone pocket is a real bonus, as is one that has a handy D-ring so that you can clip your dog poop Dicky Bag to it, allowing you to be completely hands free! Dog slings are also a great accessory to keep with you at all times as they aren’t bulky and can be on-hand for whenever you and your dog need to use them.
When buying an product, you should always be looking for something that will stand the test of time. With that in mind, think carefully about the material. It should be soft enough to ensure your dog is cocooned comfortably, yet strong enough to take the weight of your dog. It’s essential that any carrier is washable as we all know that paws don’t stay clean for long and being able to throw yours in the wash will keep it hair and dirt-free.
When selecting a dog sling it’s not a case of one size fits all. Small to medium dogs can weigh anything up to 12kg so it’s important that you are able to select a size that suits. That also goes for strap length as us humans are all built differently too! Having an adjustable strap length has the added benefit that a periodic change of strap height every couple of hours will transfer your pup’s weight and help prevent fatigue to your back, neck and shoulders. It’s essential that your sling is easy to put on by yourself and a bonus if you can select a colour, style, and material to match your wardrobe.
Whilst in the summer months a fabric sling is perfectly sufficient, if you and your pup are outdoor adventurers and don’t mind being out when the weather isn’t so kind, then consider a waterproof version. These often come with the added bonus of a rain cover that can be clipped over the sling keeping your pooch war and dry.
Discover Slickers’ very own range of traditional and waterproof slings here. With prices from £49.50 and a range of sizes and colours to choose from, Slickers Slings are all manufactured in the UK, supporting British businesses.