Camping is a wonderful pastime for those who love the outdoors, and it can be done nearly year-round, depending on which part of the country you’re in. Many campers enjoy including their pets on trips, but it’s important to come prepared so that your animal stays safe and happy for the duration. This means bringing along everything he’ll need to stay warm or cool, keeping him close to you if he’s not used to being around wild animals, and scouting the area for poisonous plants before setting up camp.
Do some research before you make any plans; look up the rules at your campground to make sure dogs are allowed and check the weather forecast to ensure you won’t be dealing with rain or snow. It’s also a good idea to take your dog to the vet for a checkup so you won’t have to worry about any health issues while you’re away.
Here are some of the best tips on camping with your dogs.
Vaccinations and vet visits
One of the first things you should do before heading out on your trip is take your dog to the vet for a checkup and to make sure he’s vaccinated against Lyme disease and heartworms, which are carried by ticks and mosquitoes, respectively. Check out your options for flea and tick repellants, as well; the last thing you want to deal with on a camping trip is a battle with bugs. Also consider enrolling in pet insurance in case your pup meets some trouble on his camping trip.
It’s imperative to pack all the things your dog uses on a daily basis to keep him on his schedule and help him stay comfortable. Bring his food and water bowls and enough food and water to get him through the entire trip. If the weather is going to be hot where you are, bring extra water, because you never know what sort of water supply will be available. It might be a good idea to invest in a collapsible water bowl that can be covered; this will not only keep bugs from getting into it when your dog is done drinking, it will keep him safe from diseases spread by mosquitoes and help preserve water.
It’s also smart to bring your dog’s leash or harness, any paperwork from the vet confirming that he’s had all his shots, and I.D. tags in case he gets separated from you.
For more helpful tips on how to prepare for a camping trip with your pet, read on here.
Keep your dog on a harness, especially if you have a campfire going or if there are other campers nearby. Having a harness and a leash will help you control your pet and keep him safe.
It’s also a good idea to bring a brush so you can go over his fur at the end of each day and make sure there are no ticks embedded or debris that could cause irritation to the skin.
Give him lots of exercise and playtime
Dogs need lots of room to run and play, especially younger ones, so take him for daily walks and let him free of his leash when possible. Doing so will ensure that he doesn’t get bored or act out when you need him to be on his best behavior.
Remember that your dog may not understand to stay away from steep drops, so if you take him on hiking trips keep him on a leash. Keep an eye out for any plants or other animals that might be dangerous for your dog, and remember to have fun! Camping with your pet can be a great bonding experience.