One of the best things you can do with your dog is taking it on a hike up a mountain. Most dogs, regardless of breed and size love a good walk in the great outdoors. However, hiking up even an easy route on a small sized mountain, takes a lot of planning and preparation, even if you are doing it without a dog. The addition of your furry friend means you have to take extra precautions.
With this in mind, before you head off in the car with your canine buddy, take a look at our top 10 tips for hiking a mountain with a dog.
1 – Put Your Dog Through Some Pre-Hike Training
- 1 – Put Your Dog Through Some Pre-Hike Training
- 2 – Research Mountain Hikes Suitable For Dogs
- 3 – Pack Lots Of Food And Snacks For Both Of You
- 4 – Take Dog Poo Bags
- 5 – Pack A First-Aid Kit Suitable For Dogs
- 6 – Let Your Dog Carry Something
- 7 – Pack Extra Doggy Clothing
- 8 – Take Their Favourite Toy
- 9 – Keep A Close Eye On Your Dog And Stop Regularly
- 10 – Invest In A Good Leash
Before you even begin the walk or planning the walk you are going to take, you need to do some pre-hike training with your little buddy. Make sure your dog is comfortable around other dogs and people and has been socialised well. It is also a good idea if he or she is not used to experiencing new things that you prepare them for this. You should also consider taking some kind of training class together. Another way you can do this is by taking him to the dog park regularly, as this will help to test in a safer environment than the side of a mountain whether they will act okay around different dogs and people.
You also should work on your own fitness levels. Remember if anything goes wrong, you may have to carry your dog down a mountain.
2 – Research Mountain Hikes Suitable For Dogs
Although you may have some ideas in mind, it is not a good idea to drive out to the start of a trail only to find it is not suitable for dogs, or worse still they are not allowed there at all. There are plenty of places you can look at online that gives you information on hiking trails suitable for dogs in your area.
3 – Pack Lots Of Food And Snacks For Both Of You
When you go hiking alone, you will probably take some high-energy snacks and lots of water. When you take your dog along, you need to ensure they have enough food and water too. to avoid any complications, bring the food your dog normally and some of their favourite snacks. Don’t be afraid to pack more treats than you would normally give them because they are going to be burning up more calories than they normally do. For water, along with your own water, it is a good idea to bring a water bottle for your dog, and a collapsible water bowl, like the Roysili Collapsible Dog Bowl.
The Collapsible Dog Bowl from Roysili is BPA-free and FDA-approved and made from silicone. Not only is it extremely convenient and easy to use, there is a quick-release Carabiner clip system for attaching it to a backpack or your dog’s leash when it is not in use. It is also extremely expensive since it comes in a two-pack offer.
4 – Take Dog Poo Bags
One of the most important rules you should always follow when out and about in nature, particularly hiking up landmark mountains is – ‘leave no trace’. That is, ensure you clear any rubbish you generate up as you go along and that includes dog poo. Take lots of dog poo bags and dispose of them in the correct way. The
DogCareCompany Dog Treat Bag with Built-In Poop Bag Dispenser is a good choice. This actually kills two birds with one stone, as this is not only a great way to pack your dog’s favourite treats, it also features a handy roll of dog poop bags and dispenser.
5 – Pack A First-Aid Kit Suitable For Dogs
Another necessary thing that you may not have even thought about is making sure you have packed a first aid kit specifically designed for dogs. This Pet First Aid Kit not only includes everything you could want or need but comes vet-approved and is great value for money.
6 – Let Your Dog Carry Something
Depending on the fitness level, age and size of your dog you could let them carry some of their own gear. This will help you as you won’t be carrying quite as much, but you should always go down to an actual pet store and try some on your dog to see which fits best and which your dog feels comfortable wearing.
7 – Pack Extra Doggy Clothing
Bring the right clothing along with your dog, based on the area you are hiking and the expected weather. While you are walking, if there is a temperate climate, your dog will probably not need a jacket, but if you take long stops along the way it is good to take something along to keep them happy and warm. The layer system that we humans use can work well for your dog too. Along with waterproof jackets and a fleece, you should also take a high vis vest or jacket like the Track Jacket from Ruffwear for your dog to wear, as the visibility may be poor.
8 – Take Their Favourite Toy
Bring one of your dog’s favourite toy, for when you take breaks from walking. It is best to bring one you actually know they will play with or else you will be carrying extra weight and taking up extra space in your bag for no reason. Having something familiar that they like can also prevent your dog from getting stressed.
9 – Keep A Close Eye On Your Dog And Stop Regularly
Watch your dog closely while you are hiking, to check for any signs of fatigue, overheating or discomfort. If your dog limps, pants excessively or behaves differently then stop walking and check them over. Offer them food or water and if necessary, use your first aid kit. Rather than waiting until they are physically showing signs of fatigue, make regular stops.
10 – Invest In A Good Leash
Most mountain trails that are suitable for dogs require that they are on the lead for all or most of the time. Therefore, it is a good idea to check how sturdy and hike-worthy the lead you normally use with your dog. It may be worth investing in a brand new one, perhaps one like the AOShop Hands-Free Dog Leash, which can be attached around your waist, freeing up your hands while keeping your dog close. As an added bonus, there is also a dog poop dispenser attached.
This post was written by Simon at PoochingAround