It’s that time of year where the weather is starting to cool, the bon fires are starting to crackle and the long weekends are calling for a trip away with your dog! Whether you’re an avid camper or new to the whole dog camping adventure, you will love the tongue out excitement of your companion as they get excited for the days adventure and the warm fur cuddles at the end of the night. But before you race to the car and set off on your adventure, here are a few things to consider to make the most out of your trip.
Before you race to the car
Nothing spoils a trip more than uncomfortable shoes rubbing on your feet and causing blisters. Well, your pup is the same. Whether you’re using harnesses, collars or packs, be sure to make sure your pup’s gear fits correctly and has been sufficiently worn in to ensure they have a comfortable adventure. It also helps to make sure all buckles and carabiners are working properly so you’re not having to make any last minute fixes.
If you’re heading to a private camp ground be sure to call ahead and inquire what the regulations are for having dogs at the grounds. Some camp grounds require dogs to be leashed at all times and others have sizing limits. It would also be useful to find out if there are any dangers to be aware of for your dog – this may include snakes, blue bottle jellyfish etc. Having this information beforehand will help you to plan your adventures so you both get the most enjoyment out of your trip away.
What to pack
Everyone’s needs will vary slightly when it comes to packing essentials. Diva dogs will take all toys, accessories, coats and blankets “just in case” while others will carry the bare essentials. The decision is ultimately up to you and how plan to spend your time away with your pup. Here are a few basics to ensure your dog brings along:
- Collar, harness, leash
- Zip line if remaining tethered onsite
- Poop bags – and an extra bag to contain them in case you can’t find a bin immediately!
- Coat or blanket
- Food – dried kibble or dehydrated foods are easiest as they won’t require refrigeration to stay fresh. You can add some treats for training rewards to ensure your pup is well behaved on hikes!
- Toy – be sure to bring along your pups favourite toy so they have something to enjoy whilst at the camp site
- First Aid – First Aid packs a great to have on hand in the car or in your pack. You can pick these up from any large pet store or online if you order before your trip.
Making the most of your adventure
The biggest cause of stress on a trip away with your dog is having your dog not listen to you and run away disrupting other campers while you’re chasing after them shouting “Come Back”. It looks bad! The easiest way to avoid this is to do some training runs with your pup local to your home so you can both properly prepare for your trip. Having a few go-to commands that your dog easily responds to will make your trip so much more enjoyable for you and for your fellow campers!
Recalling your dog and teaching your dog to “leave it” are essential for safety. This will ensure your dog will come quickly back to your side if there is danger and also teaches them not to sniff or eat something that can be potentially harmful.
After your trip
When you return home from your trip be sure to wash your pups gear so it is clean and comfortable and ready for the next adventure. If you had a fantastic trip away and highly recommend the location, be sure to give them a thumbs up on reviews to make it easier for other dog owners choosing a camping location for their pup.