If you are planning an extended trip or a day hiking with your pet, you will need to be prepared before hitting the trails. Hiking with a dog can be one of the most exciting experiences but it can turn out to be the exact opposite if you are not well prepared. Here are some important tips to consider when hiking and traveling with your pet.
- Leash and collar
It is important that your dog wears a collar with updated identification tags to help in identifying your dog in case you are separated. Some hiking trails have a strict leash policy while others are a bit lenient. It is advisable to carry a short four or six-foot leash instead of the retractable type. This ensures that you have a good control of your pet distance. For larger dog breeds, you can use a harness for a much better control. Get one HERE
- Pet backpacks
You can use a backpack to carry your pet if needed or you can actually have your dog wear a backpack to carry his own food. However, should you decide to have your pet carry a backpack, there are some factors that you may need to consider when determining how much weight your dog can carry. These include the health history and age of your dog but experts recommend that a dog should never carry more than 25 percent of its weight. For long hikes, you can also use a backpack to carry your small pups or nervous pooches. The best dog backpack should have thick and padded shoulder straps, a chest and waist strap for comfort and easy carrying. Ensure that it has mesh windows for your pups ventilation and visibility. Get one HERE
- Parasite prevention
Your dog may pick up parasites and bacteria along lakes and rivers that could make him sick. For instance, stagnant water and contaminated soil may contain leptospirosis a flu-like disease that mostly affects dogs. Your veterinarian should advise you on the best parasite prevention methods. Preventive care is extremely important for your dog before you embark on your trip. This will ensure that you stay ahead of those stubborn fleas and ticks.
- Dog first aid kit
Remember to include a well-packed first aid kit for your pet and also learn how to use it in case of emergencies. Some terrains can be fun for you but extremely dangerous for your dog. Thorns can injure your dog’s foot pads and cause him so much pain hence you should be able to aid him before getting him to a veterinary clinic. Get one here
- Health and endurance
Before taking your dog out for a hike, ensure that he is in good health to endure the physical exertion. This will depend on your dog’s age, health history, breed, and weight. You will also need to consider seasonal temperature as some dogs may overheat on hot days. Some dog breeds such as bulldogs, Boston terriers, Pekingese, and pugs will have a hard time regulating their breath in warm climates. It is advisable to consult with your veterinarian to assist you to determine your pet’s limitations.
An outdoor adventure with your dog should be fun but you must also protect your pet’s well-being and health. Once your journey comes to end, thoroughly check your dog for fleas, ticks and other foreign objects he may have picked along the way. A warm bath will also make him feel much better.