Everything you need for a camping trip or hike with your dog
Spring is coming, and so is good... well, better weather!
Many of us will be looking forward to long walks, hikes and camping trips along with our best friends - by which we obviously mean your dogs!
It's good to be prepared each time you head out in the great outdoors, and doubly so if you're taking a dog with you. Here's everything you'll need to have with you to make sure everything goes without a hitch...
Carrying all supplies needed can leave you feeling more like a mule than a person out on a hike, and no one needs to have to fish through a rucksack for the poo bags that gave fallen all the way to the bottom! Some leads are made specifically to help you carry small things you need at hand while walking your dogs, with a bag for storage - this one can be tied around your waist as well to keep your hands free!.
While your dog should never be overloaded, they can help carry a few things with specially designed doggie saddlebacks, integrated with their harness. They won't certainly carry the tent, but at least they can being their own food and snacks!
Cooling coats and harnesses
While your dog may be in need to extra warmth at night, as temperatures rise it's always good to keep them cool - especially if there is a lot of walking to be done. A heath stroke miles away from a vet's is the last thing anyone needs! Cooling harnesses, cooling vests and cooling neck gaiters are ideal to keep them safe and cool in hot weather.
If the weather is not so warm that keeping your dog cool will be a concern, all you need is a good sturdy harness and a good collar, and you're ready to go!
Long line and lead
A long line is a must to allow your dog freedom roaming the camp without concerns he may bolt after a squirrel while you're not looking! It is especially helpful for dogs who have a chase drive, as they'll be able to run around but will not disappear the second they spot a deer in the distance while you're unwinding!
While walking, a good quality lead goes a long way. Lightweight leads with strong clips are best for long hikes.
Dogs don't usually need boots, but if your route takes you over particularly challenging terrain, your dog may be thankful to have a pair! However, you should make sure to get the dog accustomed to walking in boots well before the hike. The funny walk dogs make when not yet used to boots may be amusing to witness, but not ideal while on a camping trip!
Bowls can be a pain to transport while camping - and if your dog can eat food without one, a water bowl is always necesarry! A packable water bowl is ideal for hikes and camping trips, as it's lightweigh, easy to clean, and even easier to carry!
It's always a good time for a play session! Make sure to bring sturdy toys that can be thrown, retrieved and tugged at your heart's content, as well as chew toys to keep your dog entertained when you're all out of energy and resting by the bonfire.
Doggie sleeping bag
Some dogs can sleep comfortably outdoors - think of Huskies, or Newfoundlands! - but others will need some extra comfort and warmth, especially if they don't happen to have a thick double coat! A sleeping bag meant specifically for dogs, better yet if water-resistant and easy to clean, is a must.