Dog Forum banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
72 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So I've been doing 3 night hikes on the AT a couple times a summer with a group of kids, and my fiance and I just started talking about doing our own trip. I think our dog would really enjoy it, but I have some trepidation about it, given how young she is and how new to us she is. We've had her 6 weeks, but probably wouldn't plan a trip til at least April if not July. She's 8 months now, with a lot of energy but maybe not a lot of stamina? I'd probably try some long day hikes to see if she could stay awake and hiking all day. So far we've just done short hour long bursts at a time (running at the park) and she'll crash for a few hours after that.
Has anyone here done much hiking and/or camping with their dogs? Any advice or reasons to proceed with caution in this situation?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,070 Posts
I hiked Mt Washington with my 30lb mix, she was 3yo at the time. She did very well, I kept her on a long umbilical lead the whole time since she is a hound and I was afraid she would run off. The high altitudes and steep climb was difficult for her and she ended up doing a lot of damaged to her feet since it was mostly granite. She wore a ruffwear backpack with the webmaster harness so we were able to help lift her up the steep parts. She has ruffwear summit booties that we put on her after we noticed the damage to her feet. We ended up taking the shuttle down, I blamed it on maggie (even though there was no way I was making it back down without dying). We had also camped the night before in the woods and were hiking with 30lb of equipment.

Definitly make sure you have lots of water, I packed 4 liters for Maggie and I. do the day hikes to gage her stamina and desire to keep going.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
172 Posts
I go hiking and camping with my dogs all the time. While at camp, my dogs are usually on tie outs and while hiking I have them on hands free leashes. Water is extremely important especially in the summer. My guys carry their own water in their doggie backpacks.
Make sure you have a way of containing your dog when you are in a tent. We used to let our dog roam freely in the tent but one night he must have smelled a rabbit or something and chewed his way out. Since then we always keep both guys in a crate.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
72 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I hadn't thought of the paws! That's definitely something to consider. I also have a hound, so unlikely that I'll ever be able to trust her entirely offleash. How long was your tether? I'd worry about her getting tangled if she wandered off trail even a bit.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,070 Posts
I used the ruffwear roamer at the time. Now I use an Iron doggy lead system since i have two hounds. I like both, the iron doggy is much more durable (and expensive). Make sure you bring a collapsible bowl for your dog. If you want to have your down carry their own water, which I would do, make sure you get a back pack the distrubutes the weight properly over the dogs body. I loves the ruffwear packs, both my pups have them. They are durable and function well. Both of their packs have the webmaster harness as the base. If you get the pallisades pack, the back pack bags are removable so you can use the harness on short hikes, walks or runs.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
8,034 Posts
I hike and camp with Aspen all the time. She's typically off leash while hiking - but she has proven herself trustworthy. I started her on a 20' lead. If it's a really busy trail, I'll use a hands free leash.

Be sure to research the trails before you go because some don't allow dogs. There are several spots along the AT that don't allow dogs and I know of at least 1 mountain in NH.

Hmm, let's see... hiking gear for Aspen:

- Spare harness, collar, lead
- I keep an ID card in her pack that lists her microchip # and her vaccines
- She wears a pack, I recommend to start practicing with a pack now and slowly adding weight. I used to carry ALL of her stuff and it's nice not having to haha
- Boots, I pack them but she doesn't wear them all the time
- Water, food, treats (1 collapsible bowl)
- Bear bell
- Doggie first aid kit
- I always bring her a light jacket for emergency's
- I also have a couple of doggie pain reliever from my vet. Sometimes we're really far out and if she pulls a muscle or something, I may not be able to get her to a vet right away but I want to alleviate the pain.

Camping gear: all of the above but another bowl, a tie out, she sleeps in the tent with me so I don't bring a crate or anything.

I think that's about it... if I think of anything else, I'll let you know. There is NOTHING like being at the top of a mountain with your dog. :) Have fun!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
165 Posts
We do as much hiking as possible in this pancake-flat part of the world. Our girl just turned 1 but even at 8 months she would have been able to do 4 hours or so of hiking/day if we had kept her on leash (off leash she runs like crazy and burns all her energy early on...not great at pacing herself). Now she's 14 months and can definitely do the full day hikes no problems. But she's active throughout the week with us (daily 5-15km runs, at least 2 hours off-leash walking each day during which she RUNS like crazy) so I never did worry about her energy levels. She is getting better at learning that when the harness goes on and the car ride is long (i.e. not 10 minutes to the forest but 1-2 hours to the trail head) that we're going out for a long walk and she's learning to pace herself so she's on leash less and less now. Obviously along busy trails and in conservation areas she's leashed.

Where we are the paths are forested and not rocky, so she doesn't wear boots but when we move back to NA and get back into *real* hiking then I'll definitely invest in some for her. If hiking consistently enough though their feet toughen up to it nicely.

She has the Ruffwear Palisades pack, the Ruffwear roamer leash, and her collapsible bowl. We haven't camped with her yet as we only got her in September, but that will happen later this summer hopefully once the weather turns dry(er) and warm(er). She'll sleep in the tent with us so the only additional things packed will be a small towel (to clean off feet before coming into the tent) and her food. I like the idea above though of doggy pain-reliever. I'll probably add that to her pack.

The palisades pack came with two 1L water bladders but it's such a wet climate here and practically no elevation gain that we've never actually used them, there's plenty of streams and puddles along the way that she drinks from. If we fill the bladders and make her carry them, it's only to make the day harder for her in attempts to tire her out on shorter hikes :)

But again, I would call what we do here going walking, not hiking given the low elevation, easy terrain, and broad well-groomed trails. I can't wait to get back to the US/Canada and get back into proper mountain hiking with her!!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
8,034 Posts
Oh, also... she'll be 2 in May. I've had her since July 2014 and started hiking as soon as I got her. Last year was her first full season of hikes. We've gone out for two full days in a row (about 10 hours per day) with no issues. Obviously, it's weather dependent... on really hot and humid days, we don't go as long or take extra breaks, etc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
We started taking our Newfie camping at 9 weeks. We took a tie out to make sure he didn't go far. I probably wouldn't trust an energetic 8 mont old off leash while camping...you never know when something exciting will wonder by.

use caution about long hikes, especially if the pup is a large breed. You can overdo it with a growing pup's bones.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top