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In all fairness, strollers for dogs do get made fun of a lot. The image that comes to mind is of Elle Woods from Legally Blonde, carrying Bruiser around with her. But actually, dog strollers can be quite versatile, and there are some very viable reasons for owning one. They’re exactly like baby strollers… except for dogs.

Certainly no one needs an excuse to use a pet stroller, but there are some very good reasons to do so.

Many pet parents with senior dogs choose to use a pet stroller so their canine companion can still accompany them on walks or while they run errands. Some pet parents enjoy taking their small dogs for walks, but they don’t behave well on a leash.

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Whatever your reason for using a pet stroller, remember that most strollers can only hold dogs under 50 pounds, and most can’t even carry that much weight. They are not built for large breeds. It’s also important to keep your dog’s health needs in mind before purchasing your stroller. I’ll explain why you should be proud of your dog stroller and the benefits it brings, as well as a few notable brands that you should check out.

Why You Should Be Proud of Your Dog Stroller

For some dogs, a stroller can serve the same purpose as a wheelchair. Dogs recovering from surgery or having trouble walking due to sore muscles or joints may need to be wheeled around until they heal up.

You can’t take an injured dog for a walk, and short of leaving him in the house for a long time all alone, what else can you do? Buying a stroller for your dog will allow you to have some freedom in taking him out with you without worrying that he may hurt himself further.

RELATED: Five Best Dog Travel Crates for Long Trips

Strollers also can serve the same purpose as a crate, except you don’t have to carry it around (wheeling things is much easier). If you have a new puppy or a dog that is in need of crating for aggression or other emotional reasons, a stroller can serve that purpose for you. This way, you can still include your dog in your life, just in a more convenient way for the both of you.

Choose the Right Dog Stroller

When picking out your dog’s stroller, there are several factors to consider. First, think about his size. If you have a puppy, he is going to grow (obviously), so think about the size he’ll be when he grows up. You don’t want to buy a wrongly-sized stroller and end up having to buy a whole new one (especially since the good ones aren’t exactly cheap).

RELATED: How to Prepare Your Dog for Summer

You Should Be Proud of Your Dog Stroller
Photo: conbon33

Secondly, take into account the terrain that you’ll be pushing your dog around on. If you’re planning to do a daily stroll around the park, you shouldn’t need wheels designed for rough terrain.

If you’re looking to do something more adventurous, pick a stroller that is suited for that adventure. A stroller’s portability and size aren’t necessarily determinative of how durable they will be on a hiking trail.

Highly Rated Dog Strollers

There’s no “one-size-fits-all” when it comes to strollers. There are variables that determine the type of stroller you select. I’ve read some consumer reviews and wanted to include some of the most highly rated dog strollers for you to consider. This list is in no specific order. I just wanted to give you an idea of the different types of strollers you’ll find while shopping.

BestPet All Terrain Extra Wide 3 Wheels Dog Stroller

For the casual stroller user, there is the BestPet All Terrain Extra Wide 3 Wheels Dog Stroller. It comes with a rain cover and the top, front, and rear windows are all mesh to keep bugs out. This stroller is best for people who are just cruising around the park or the mall.

It is extremely easy to fold in and out (takes less than ten seconds) and the storage compartment below is roomy enough for you to put whatever you need down there. It also comes with cup holders. The joints are Nylon, so they’re more flexible and the zipper is extremely strong. On Amazon, it was ranked #1 in pet strollers sold for dogs.

This dog stroller is wide enough to hold two small dogs or even one larger (no more than thirty pounds) dog. It is not big enough for dogs over thirty pounds and the measurements of the carriage case are 21″(L) x 13.5″(W) x 20″(H). Be aware also that it is leopard print covered, so if you’re not into that design, you may want to look at a different brand or find your inner diva.

Pet Gear AT3 Generation II All Terrain Pet Stroller

For something a little more suited for rough terrain, there is the Pet Gear AT3 Generation II All Terrain Pet Stroller. It has three large-sized wheels on it that are pretty heavy-duty (11.5 x 11.5 inches). The pet compartment is large and can hold up to sixty pounds.

The dimensions are 28” x 14.5” x 23” and there is also a storage basket and tray for other items to go into. This sturdy stroller is covered in a Euro-Canopy. Keep in mind that the rain cover is sold separately. There is a waterproof tray on the inside and the cargo hold is fleece lined for warmth and comfort. There is room for two small dogs to sit comfortably together on the inside and the strength of this stroller means that it won’t wear down, even after the longest of walks in the park.

BestPet New Blue 4 Wheels Pet Stroller

If you want a dog stroller with four wheels, a brand that consumers suggest is the BestPet New Blue 4 Wheels Pet Stroller. The wheels are six inches in diameter and work well on rough terrain. The weight capacity is thirty pounds, but the cargo area is wide enough that two small dogs can fit in there comfortably.

There really isn’t much of a difference between a three-wheeled and four-wheeled stroller, but some owners feel more comfortable with a four-wheeled one just because we’re used to things having four wheels. Three wheeled strollers may actually be easier to steer just because they only have the one wheel jutting forward, but again, that’s dependent upon the type of terrain you choose to travel on.

OxGord Pet Stroller

Finally, a fourth recommendable stroller according to consumers is the OxGord Pet Stroller. Their newly designed 2015 model comes in both four wheel and three wheel options. The mesh screen keeps the bugs out and there is a large compartment underneath for you to place dog products or your personal belongings, as well as a cup holder.

This stroller is great for long walks, but be aware that the weight capacity is only 15 pounds. The handle bar is nearly forty inches from the ground, so if you’re a taller person, you won’t have to stoop. OxGord caters to people who have puppies and small dogs whose legs are too short to go for long walks. The stroller slightly resembles a London baby carriage (at least, the four-wheeled one does) and is a fashionable way to take your dog around town.

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Remember that these examples were only chosen because they are some of the favorites among pet parents that purchased strollers for their dogs. Make your selection based on what is comfortable for you and which stroller meets your dog’s individual needs. There are models in lots of different sizes, colors, and styles so you’re sure to find a stroller that you like and one that you can be proud of.

Featured photo courtesy of Pet Gear via Amazon