Taking your dog along on a camping trip is common among dog owners. It is a great way to spend quality time with your pooch while exploring the great outdoors. Not only does your dog get to experience new sights and smells, but it also gets to socialize with other people and other dogs. When taking your pooch along on a camping trip, you should always plan in advance. Keep all useful things your dog will need in a bag pack with you, such as an extra leash or harness, dry dog food, doggy snacks, water bowl, bottled water, poop scooper, poop bags, etc.
But sometimes, even after making all necessary arrangements, we tend to make mistakes while camping with our dogs.
Here are some common mistakes while camping with your dog that you should avoid.
Not Keeping Your Dog in Check
When you decide to take a camping trip with your dog, keep camping etiquette in mind. Try and keep things as clean as possible. Your dog should not be urinating on anyone’s tent, furniture, or coolers. Sometimes it is also advised to keep your dog on a leash to keep things “polite,” especially when camping with a large group of friends. Even if your dog is friendly and trustworthy, it can still nip on a companion’s food or perhaps steal from your friends’ plate, which can be frustrating.
Barking excessively can be disruptive, especially with large groups. Try and keep your dog as calm and placid as possible. If your pup is barking continuously, do pay extra attention to it and figure out the reason for its barking.
Letting Your Dog Interact with Wildlife
Do not try to let your dog chase wildlife. Even though most wildlife does stay away from large groups of noisy campers, there is always a chance you can stumble upon an animal who might get alarmed to see your dog. Do thorough research on the kind of wildlife present in the region where you are camping before starting the camping trip. This is especially important for areas where predators such as bears, mountain lions, wolves, or venomous snakes might be present.
Not Preparing for Every Situation
When camping with your dog, be prepared. You need to be certain your dog is comfortable with sleeping in a tent outdoors before you begin the trip. Make sure your dog is silent will be able to sleep well. You can work on this by training your dog with treats beforehand and making sure your dog gets used to the camping equipment. Camping out in the backyard for several nights can help with this too. Basic training for good manners is a must before you go camping with your dog. Your dog should be obedient and should respond to basic commands such as ‘sit,’ ‘come,’ and ‘stay’ at least.
Not Bringing the Right Equipment
When undertaking a camping trip with your dog, bringing padded travel bedding is always a good idea. This is especially useful if your dog is older as it would find the ground hard and uncomfortable. You can also bring your dog’s regular bed or favorite blanket to keep them comfortable. This will also insulate them from the ground, especially in regions that get colder at night. If you are hiking or camping in an area with rough terrain that includes sharp rocks or thorns, it’s a good idea to bring doggie booties along. Doggie booties can also be used if your dog is not used to walking long distances. Do start training your dog to start wearing these booties several weeks beforehand to build their endurance. Keeping a muzzle close at hand is also a good idea as an added precaution. Good-tempered dogs can also become nippy sometimes if injured or threatened.
Forget to Bring Your Dog’s Food and Water
Just like humans, dogs can get sick with digestive troubles during an outdoor trip as well. Drinking water from lakes and rivers can cause stomach infections and diarrhea. Always carry bottled water and dog food that your dog is accustomed to along with you. Avoid feeding your pet anything new during the camping journey.
Forgetting Your Vet’s Contact Information
It’s handy to keep a vet’s contact information in case of an emergency. Make sure the vet is located near your camping location.
Don’t forget to carry a first-aid kit along for your dog as well. Accidents may happen even with the most cautious dog-owners; it always helps to be prepared. If your dog has any allergies, also include allergy pills and medicines. Having the necessary pills at hand may save you a trip to the veterinarian or the pharmacy. Do keep tweezers, bandages, splints, and foot balm on hand. Tweezer and bandages can be used in case a thorn gets stuck in your dogs’ foot, and foot balm is useful if your dog has been doing a lot of walking, especially on rough trails.
Do try and avoid these common mistakes while camping with your dog. Take all necessary steps that ensure your dog is comfortable and has a good time. The better prepared you are for the trip, the more you can get out of it for you and your pooch!