The stroller trend started to build about five or six years ago, said Tierra Bonaldi, a “pet lifestylist” with the American Pet Products Association, and it’s moved from strictly small-dog doll-style strollers to joggers strong enough to hold a 150-pound dog, and manly enough for even macho men to be seen with.
With their drink holders, sun shades, rear-locking breaks, storage bins — and soaring prices — pet strollers are following the trend in the (human) baby stroller world, Bonaldi said. “It’s crazy. Some cost hundreds of dollars.”
On the Uncommondog.com website, The DoggyRide Lightweight Jogger-Stroller will run an owner $359.10, and is built on a light aluminum-alloy frame. On Amazon, the PetZip Happy Trailer jogger goes for $265, and comes in a jaunty red or a nice blue, and a Pet Gear Expedition stroller goes for $197. Pricey? Perhaps, but as one reviewer noted, the gear is not solely for the benefit of the pets. “The stroller was the perfect answer to the problem of our dogs tiring out before we did,” N. Brabec wrote, “and it has allowed us to take even longer walks.”
In South Boston, a pink stroller emblazoned with paw prints allows Maureen Berry, an assistant manager at the Fenway Bark dog hotel, to commute from Roslindale with one or two of her three dogs. The trip involves the Silver Line, the Red Line, and the Orange line, and wouldn’t be doable without wheels.
“What do you think, bud?” Berry asked on a recent afternoon as she and Nicholas, her 13-year-old Yorkie, left work. The 18-pound pooch, youthful but with mobility problems, sat upright in his carriage, the wind of Boston Harbor ruffling his tan and black fur, his adorable black nose sniffing like mad. Berry scratched his head and smiled as the pair made their way home, together.