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The Complete Guide to Camping With Dogs

If you get an opportunity to go camping, always take it. The excited feeling one has when they are going camping never gets old. Factor your dog for the next trip. Dogs make fantastic camping buddies. The first time can be a challenge but if you do it right, the experience will be worthwhile. Here is the complete guide to camping with dogs that can help you plan your next adventure.

Camping With Dogs Guide Content

  • Choose A Dog-Friendly Campground
  • Have An ID Tag For Your Dog
  • Have An Adequate Restraint/Leash
  • Keep The Dog Close To You
  • Food and Water
  • Sleeping Arrangements
  • Protecting Your Dog
  • Pick Up After Your Dog
  • Carry A Canin First Aid Kit
  • Dog Entertainment Options

Choose a Dog-Friendly Campground

Not all camping ground will be friendly to your canine friend. You need to check in advance as you do not want to get a rude surprise when you are already at the camping ground. If your camping ground is dog-friendly, they might have other conditions that you will need to adhere to before you can be accepted there.

The rule of thumb is to carry all the vaccination and medical records for your dog. Everything should be up to date. Treat your dog against flea and tick bites as well.

Have an ID Tag for Your Dog

Dogs are intelligent beings and getting lost is rare, but it happens. For instance, you go out camping in the woods and your dog decides to chase a rabbit or a squirrel. They might wander off too far from your campsite and get lost. If the dog has an ID tag, it might be easier to get reconnected if someone else finds the dog. On the tag, include your phone number, the campground you are in, the number of your campsite, and the campground ranger’s number if possible. 

Have an Adequate Restraint/Leash

You will need to have a good leash, particularly if your dog loves wandering around. A leash will help you keep the dog in control. If you are camping in an open space, you can have a long leash. This gives the dog some room to wiggle around the campsite. If you are camping in the forest where the trees can be a source of distraction, get a leash that is not too long to prevent getting entangled in the bushes. When pitching your tent, tether the leash to the ground or tie around a post to prevent the dogs from running off when they get distracted.

Keep the Dog Close to You

You might be a lover of dogs but your neighbor might not. If your dog wanders onto your neighbor’s campsite, you might have a problem. Some dogs even steal food and other stuff from other people’s camps. This is a recipe for disaster. If your neighbors are dog-lovers, they will let you know but letting your dog move around without supervision is not a good idea. 

Recommended dog tie-out for campsites.

Food and Water

When camping, always have enough food and water for yourself and your dog. The trick here is to pack extra food to last you for at least two days after your planned camping period has lapsed. Do not dehydrate your dog. One mistake many campers make is to assume that they will find clean water at the camping ground. This might not always be the case and you need to be ready for such an eventuality.

If you are RV camping, it is easy to carry extra water because you might have room in your vehicle. Backpackers carry filtration solutions such as tablets. Purify the water you find, especially from natural resources such as rivers and streams. The water may look clean but it could be contaminated with bacteria and chemicals you cannot see with your naked eye.

Sleeping Arrangements

Whilst most people prefer having their dogs sleep with them in their tent, it would be better to carry a dog cot. Do not let the dog sleep on the ground. Their bodies lose heat to the earth fast and it can get cold at in the wild. Carry with you a portable bed they can lie on at night. This will prevent them from getting hypothermia. A general tip when camping is to bring a tent that is a little bigger than you need. This gives room for you and your dog without compromising on personal space.

Protecting Your Dog

Dogs do get blisters and splinters too and if you know you will be going through rugged terrains, you should protect them. Buy booties and do a quick test at home. They will take some time to get used to the booties. To protect them from extreme cold at night, buy a dog sweater or coat. Dogs are excellent swimmers and you do not need to worry much about drowning when you are doing water sports. Despite that fact, it would not hurt to get them a life jacket, in case something does not go as planned.

Pick Up After Your Dog

You agree that stepping in dog poop (Or any other poop for that matter) is gross. Don’t subject your fellow campers to this. Some camping grounds take dog hygiene very seriously and you may be fined huge fees if you are not careful. To prevent this, carry some poop bags to keep your dog and campsite clean. Try to find biodegradable material that you can safely dispose of without causing harm to the environment.

Carry A Canine First Aid Kit

Do not forget to carry their first aid kit as well. Stock it and be prepared for any emergencies. It would be a good thing to talk to your veterinary about this. They can tell what is essential to stock and how to treat certain issues when they arise. The common items to pack include anti-inflammatory drugs, gauze, antiseptic spray, tweezers, scissors, disposable gloves, and scrubs. Always follow your vet’s instructions when it comes to your dog’s treatment.

Dog Entertainment Options

Dogs get bored too and they love to play. You know your dog better. Some dogs love running and fooling around and you will need to take them on a walk occasionally so that they can dispense that energy. When you are not feeling like walking, or the weather restricts your movement to within your campgrounds, give the dog a toy to play with. It would be better if it’s something they are familiar with already as it will bring them more comfort.

If your dog is noisy, you can request to camp further from others. You do not want the sounds of the dog barking throughout the night to disturb other people’s peace at the campsite.

Camping With Dogs Packing List