As summer approaches, outdoor activities such as hiking become more popular. Hiking is not only good exercise for you and your dog, but it’s also a unique chance to bond with your dog while appreciating nature. However, it’s critical to keep your dog’s safety in mind the whole time. Dogs, like humans, can tire and are susceptible to heat stroke, particularly on hot days. Dogs can be harmed by on trails from hazards like rocky and steep, uneven terrain. Here are five things to think about before you go on your next hiking trip:
- 1 1. Make sure your dog is in good health before going on a hike
- 2 2. Keep your dog on a leash and stick to the designated trails
- 3 3. Allow your dog to stop and rest frequently while hiking
- 4 4. Pick up after your dog and be respectful of the hiking surroundings
- 5 5. Bring lots of dog supplies for your hike
1. Make sure your dog is in good health before going on a hike
Use caution and avoid bringing dogs that aren’t ideal for hiking. When things like breed, age, size, and personality are taken into account, not all dogs make good hiking partners.
2. Keep your dog on a leash and stick to the designated trails
Before going on a hike, be sure that dogs are allowed on the trail. You should be aware that dogs are not permitted in most national and state parks. Even if leashing dogs isn’t required by law, it’s a good idea to keep them on a leash for their safety. Keep a close eye on your dog and don’t let them off the leash. Keeping your dog close by will keep you and them safe from wild animals, poisonous snakes, and toxic plants.
3. Allow your dog to stop and rest frequently while hiking
Make numerous stops along the trail to provide your dog with water and treats. Keep in mind that dogs are susceptible to heatstroke on hot days. Feeding your dog right before or after hiking could make them sick. Feed them 30 minutes before or one hour after your hike. If you’re hiking in a rural place without safe, clean water available, bring plenty of bottled water or a portable water filter with you.
4. Pick up after your dog and be respectful of the hiking surroundings
Pick up after your dog on hiking trails to show respect for the surroundings and your fellow hikers. Use and dispose of doggy waste bags at designated trash cans, or carefully bury pet waste at least 200 feet away from the trails, sources of water, and campgrounds. Although some trails may provide biodegradable doggy waste bags, it may be faster and more convenient to buy them in advance.
5. Bring lots of dog supplies for your hike
You may want to travel light, but it’s best to carry more than less when it comes to hiking supplies for your dog. Here’s a list of things to bring for your hike:
- Food and treats
- Safe drinking water
- Disposable waste bags
- Travel food and water bowls
- Pet insect repellent
- Protective dog clothing and booties
- Pet first aid kit