There are few things in life better than heading out on beautiful hiking trails with your canine best friend. Being able to share that incredible adventure with your pet is a wonderful way to bond, and their presence is also a great way to provide you with that added motivation.
However, when it comes to going out on a dog-friendly adventure, there are a lot of things that you need to consider. First, you will need to ensure that you are choosing hiking trails that suit your pet. You will then need to also ensure you have the right equipment and are following the best hiking etiquette possible.
So if you are looking to go hiking with dogs, we have put together our top tips to help you!
Dog-friendly hiking etiquette
Dog-friendly hiking trails can be an incredible adventure for your pet, but it can also be a very stimulating time. That is why when heading out for these kinds of outdoor activities; you need to ensure that your do is able to follow basic commands and be comfortable walking on a leash. Without these two key skills, they are not ready to start hiking.
Some other top tips to remember are:
- Choose the right routes
The first thing to remember is that you are only walking on hiking trails dedicated to dogs. Certain routes will not allow them for conservation or safety reasons, so do not think that you can go on any path that you like.
- Follow leash law
Equally, certain routes will require you to hike with your dog on a leash for certain areas. This is again for conservation or safety reasons, so only allow them to roam free in spots to which they are entitled. When hiking with them on a leash, use a non-retractable one that is under six feet in length.
- Move out of the way of others
Not everyone is a fan of dogs, so when hiking with your pet make sure that you are stepping back and allowing others to pass with enough room.
- Stick to the paths
When hiking with dogs, it can be tempting to let them run free. However, you should be working to minimize the impact they have on the local plants and wildlife, so make sure that they stay to the pathways.
- Take everything with you
Finally, you should take everything with you. From your dog’s waste to the trash you accumulate, do not leave anything behind.
Safety tips when on hiking trails
Now you know the etiquette to follow when taking your pet on your next outdoor activities; your next step is to ensure that your pet is as safe as can be. Some of the key things to consider include:
- Health and fitness: The first thing to consider when hiking with your dog is their overall health and fitness of your pet. If they are sick or are in pain due to an injury, or they are overweight or unable to walk long distances, then you should not take them on hiking trails and instead look for alternative outdoor activities.
- Age and size: Another consideration is their overall size and their age. It can be a big challenge for small dogs, requiring them to take a lot more steps than larger breeds. Equally, young puppies might not yet be ready for hiking trails, while for older dogs, it can place more stress on their joints.
- Get their vaccinations sorted: When it comes to keeping your dog safe while hiking, then you should make sure that their vaccinations are up to date before embarking on any outdoor activities. This will ensure that they will remain protected no matter what they might come across while exploring!
- Add a GPS tracker: No matter if you are walking the hiking trails you regularly use or are exploring new routes, you should make sure that your pet is equipped with a GPS tracker. This will ensure that you will always know where they are and will not have to worry about them getting lost.
Training tips for dog-friendly hiking trails
If you are looking to explore some dog-friendly trails with your canine best friend, then you should make sure that they are ready. The first thing to do is make sure that they are fit enough to take on the whole trail. Start building their fitness with various outdoor activities, slowly building them up with longer routes and walks. Being outdoors will also help them become used to seeing other people and wildlife.
Obedience is the most critical skill when taking your pet on dog-friendly hiking trails. You will need to ensure that they will return to you when called, sit still when required, remain calm when encountering other people and wildlife, and will walk by your side when asked. This will keep them safe and ensure other hikers feel comfortable around you.
Essential hiking gear for outdoor activities
Before you go hiking with your dogs, you should make sure that you have the right hiking gear with you. There are lots of things that you can bring with you when heading out for the day, but some of the most essential items include:
Collar and leash
Outdoor activities are a chance to let your dog roam free, but there will be times when you need to put them on a leash for their own safety. That is why you should always take a collar and leash with you.
Including a safety light as part of your hiking gear will ensure that you will always be able to see where you are going and keep a close eye on your pet.
Food and water
When heading out for a day hiking, you want to ensure that you are carrying enough food and water to keep both yourself and your pet sustained for the whole day.
Are you an all-weather hiker? If so, then you want to ensure that you are taking waterproofs for both of you. This will keep you both dry and comfortable for the whole day and ensure you do not get sick or at risk of hypothermia.
A hiking backpack
Of course, with so much to take with you, a high-quality hiking backpack is essential. Here at Everfun, our Hydration Backpack with 2L Reservoir is the perfect partner for any outdoor activities you have planned with your canine.
Featuring an ultra-elastic 3D breathable padded back and adjustable chest and waist straps, our hiking backpack is incredibly comfortable to wear throughout the day. To ensure that you can remain hydrated while on the trails, the backpack comes with a two-liter water bladder and a bilateral hose, making it quick and easy to get a drink whenever you need a drink.
To ensure you have all of the space you need to store your belongings, our hiking backpack offers an 18-liter main compartment alongside built-in mesh pockets that allow you to take extra bottles and equipment. Should you get caught out in the rain, then the built-in rain cover will protect your belongings from wet weather.
Want to find out more? Check out the full range, or get in touch with our friendly team today, who will be happy to help!