Camping with dogs tips can significantly enhance your camping experience. The way you prepare and pack your gear, you should also pack dog camping gear. In order not to forget any of dog camping essential be sure to use a dog camping checklist during preparation for camping.
So, what are some tips for camping with dogs? Whether you are planning car camping with dogs, RV camping with dogs or tent camping with dogs, essential camping tips include packing the basic dog essentials, ensuring safety of the pet, and enhance the pets comfort through entertainment.
It is important to note that some places refuse site visit with pets. So you will have to leave the pet behind. Be sure to leave food, water, toys, and remotely monitor the pet safety with instant alerts.
Furthermore, some campground may allow camping with dog but under strict conditions such that there is no freedom camping with dogs. In this case, you may need to acquire fencing for camping with dogs if you have to camp with pet dog.
The guide will also give you more tips on
- Basic Dog essentials you must pack
- How you can safely travel with your dog
- How to go hiking with the pet
- Keep the dog cool during hot weather
- Signs and symptoms of freezing dog and a dog that is tired or has discomfort
- RV camping with dogs ideas (Video)
Must Have Dog Camping Essentials
Feeding your pet well can bring about the best camping with dogs experience. Part of having fun while camping is to eat good food. Besides the food should be enough and also be served at the right time. Be sure to buy and pack enough dog food to last the camping period just as you do for your family.
Otherwise, you may be forced to share family food with the dog. In the instance you run out of dog food you can purchase at the campground or you just have to share your food with the dog.
Also, since you have stayed with the dog at home by now you know the amount it feeds and the frequency. Carry enough food even though the package may be heavy but it is worth it.
Have a bowl in which you will pour water for the dog to drink. It may be frustrating when you forget to carry the dog water bowl and have to give one of your utensils for the dog to drink the water.
Furthermore, you can also have travel water bottles to transport water. Besides, the travel bottles are light weight and capacity also varies.
Bedding for dogs may be optional in a number of families especially where dogs sleep kennels. Also, some people use dog beds.
However, some people actually prefer having dog bedding for the dog to enhance comfort especially when travelling where the dog may want to climb up your bed. Dog bedding enhances comfort.
Collar and Leash
The aim of collar and leash is to help you be able to control the movement of the dog. You do not want the dog to move about uncontrollably and cause a mess such as getting lost, biting people, fighting other pets, and even trigger an accident.
The sizes of the collar and leash varies depending on the size of the dog. Although some people prefer using a leash only, it poses a risk of a dog to remove itself from the leash. A collar adds more complexity for the dog and makes it less likely to remove itself.
Car Seat-belt or Harness
While driving the RV, it is safe to have all members sit and wear seatbelts to enhance safety. Similarly, dogs’ safety in a moving vehicle should be enhanced and without using a harness or a car seatbelt, then making the dog settle in one area is difficult.
Outdoor Bathing Tool For Dog
It is essential to maintain the hygiene of the dog even when camping. Dirty dogs may easily attract bugs and other pests that can be brought into the RV. Carrying dog bathing tool is important.
Shovel or Poop Bags
Shovel helps you bury the dog poops. Also, maintain a clean environment by not dumping the poop bags anywhere such as in water bodies or in places with many people. Proper disposal of waste minimizes the risk of spread of diseases.
First Aid Kit
Pets also need to be taken care of when injured to ease pain and enhance recovery. Often, the safety kit can be bought as a pack that is all inclusive.You need VET address and contacts.
Besides, the kit can contain tweezers, disposal gloves, adhesive tape, towels, OTC antibiotic ointment, cotton balls, absorbent gauze pads, ice pack, and liquid dish-washing detergent.
Tie a small torch on the collar of the dog. It enhances the security of the dog especially when traversing a low light areas or during bad weather. It becomes easy to locate the dog.
Even though getting a coat or a jacket for a dog may be optional but it is worth buying for the dog. Bright colored coat makes it easy to spot your dog easily. Besides, a warm jacket keeps the pet warm and comfortable at night and during cold weather.
You may buy a dog mat for your pet to comfortably rest instead of laying down on cold earth surface and grass. Besides, it helps keep the pet clean and free from dirt.
You may require to spray your dog with bug or tick or flea or mosquito repellant depending on the region you are visiting.
Dog Camping Checklist
You may consider using the following sample dog checklist to enhance the pet camping experience.
|Dogs’ Camping Essentials|
|Dog Food||Collapsible Food Bowls||Water Bowls|
|Collar||ID Tags||Outdoor Dog Bed|
|Outdoor Dog Blanket||Water||Water Cooler|
|Dog Warm Jacket||Dog Sleeping Bag||Dog Swim Gear|
|Dog First Aid Kit||Long Lasting Treat||Tie-out/Leash|
|Poop Bags||Dog Tent||Dog Toys|
|Shovel||Paw Pad Healing Balm||High Absorbency Towel|
|Dog Coat||Dog Jacket||Dog Mat|
|Dog Booties||Dog Liner Socks|
When all the basics have been ensured, pets can enhance the camping experience especially when you are camping with kids who love pets.
Traveling With A Dog In An RV
For your camping trip to be a success when camping with dogs, it is important to plan for the dog in advance just as you do for yourself, your children, and perhaps friends who will be joining you in trip. Consider the following tips to enhance your travel experience
Designate a specific spot in the RV for the dog
Since the dog will be your company in the RV it needs a comfortable space, seat or bed in which it will be staying during the trip. A back seat in which the dog can comfortably stretch can be a good idea to designate your dog.
However, some dogs experience travel anxiety and you may have to use a crate to limit its movement. Furthermore, it you choose a seat remember to buckle the dog since the dog may be tempted to move about in the RV when driving and it is not safe.
Along the trip keep talking to your pet as you encourage the dog to rest on the bed, or seat or whichever the place you deemed suit to reduce anxiety and enhance comfort.
Besides, always have breaks in between driving to allow the pet to have a use the bathroom and drink water if need be.
Designate a Specific Place for Sleeping
You have a comfortable bed already designed in the RV. However, it is less likely that the RV contained a pet bed when purchasing. So, be sure to prepare a comfortable place that is warm and comfy enough for the dog to sleep.
Carry enough food, water and toys
To enhance the camping experience let the dog not go hungry simply because you forgot to carry enough food. Besides, have some treats in between meals that the dog could enjoy during the trip.
Plan to Engage the Pet in Exercise and Mental Stimulation
Plenty of water ensures the dog is well hydrated during the trip. Besides, have enough toys that will keep the pet entertained and busy as you are all relaxing in the RV.
Once you have arrived in the campground, creating time to walk the dog or have it run about especially in areas that allow pets and is well fenced is a good way to exercise the pet. Use long leash to allow the pet room enough to play while still you have control over it.
The exercises provides a great mental stimulation for the dog just as it would have been stimulated when at home.
Choose a Safe Place to Leave the Dog
Sometimes you may have to run errands or engage in activities in which you will be forced to leave the dog behind. As a result, the safety of the dog is paramount whichever the place you intend to leave it.
If you are to lock it in RV, be sure to be able know how to remotely monitor your pet environment such that no harm may befall it that you can control. Besides, just as the pet could be freely left home to wander about the RV space is enough to allow some freedom to movement.
Besides, if the dog will remain behind for several hours be sure to leave behind safe toys, and few treats it can find. In some instance, you may have to find a pet sitter to watch out for the dog while you are away.
Despite emergencies being unlikely, it is good to plan for emergency just in case the works happens. Have a first aid kit essential that you could easily administer first aid to the dog when needed.
Also, always have the dog where an ID tag on its collar including how you can be contacted if the pet escapes or something happens when you are not around.
Have contact number of a local veterinarian whom you can consult when need be. Also ensure all treats, food, and water for the pet is safe for consumption. Only safe toys should be left for the pet and the environment be safe.
In the instance it is the first time the pet is accompanying you in an RV, go slow on it. Do not rush it to adjust to the changes in the environment as some may even develop anxieties. Plan to familiarize the pet with RV environment prior embarking on your trip.
For instance, take a day to relax in RV, have treats, use bathrooms, and sleep. Actually, do everything you expect the dog would be doing when you start you RV. In the instance you plan to engage in fulltime RVing then familiarization is key.
Tips for Hiking and Camping With Dogs
Hiking is likely to be one of the activities you can engage in during your camping trip. Although now you will have a dog among your companions. As a result, you ought to be mindful of the pet to enhance the success of your hiking.
So, when hiking with dogs be sure to:
Check the camping ground rules
Not all campground allow pets let alone hiking in specific trails. Thus, when you familiarize yourself with camping ground rules is important to enhance both your safety and experience during camping.
Besides, some of the reasons dogs are prohibited in some trails is because of wildlife, poisonous plants, and other dangers.
Have Sufficient Water and Food
Generally, when walking you tend to sweat and perhaps feel thirsty. Having extra water for the dog is important. Be sure to give them safe water. Do not allow them to drink any running water or stagnant water along the way since it may be toxic.
Same as food. Feed your dog well before beginning a hike. Carry some treats that the pet can enjoy while on the move.
Use a Leash
A leash will help you control you dog and monitor its movement without much hustle. Unless the dog is well trained, do not ignore using a leash. You may waste your whole day wandering about as you look for your dog that ran away in the bush and if lucky come back in the evening.
Besides, a leash would reduce attacks by wild animals as they fear humans unlike when it is wandering alone and it can become and easy target.
Paws Should Be Protected
Since the hiking would entail moving about in various places, be sure to protect your pet paws. The paws should be protected from snow, hot ground, and rough terrain depending with the place you are hiking.
For example, in winter you can protect the dog paws using wax product such as Musher’s secrete or have it wear dog booties. Booties come in various design and you can choose the one suitable for the weather.
If you are to use a tent, have a tent large enough to also accommodate your pet. A good shade is worth relaxing in after a long day hiking. Also, have it cozy and warm enough even when the weather becomes cold.
Carry a Comb/Brush
Along the trails some plants or thorns may get stuck in your dog’s fur. No need to carry such dirt in your RV or tent. So, once done with hiking simply comb or brush off all the unwanted debris on the dog fur.
Even when hiking dog toys can be helpful to keep the dog entertained. Besides, carrying toys that the dog is used to playing with while home reduces anxieties of new environment. Carrying favorite toys can greatly enhance the hiking experience.
First Aid Kit
Always have a first aid kit ready. Besides, you should also be knowledgeable on how to use the kit such that you can easily administer aid when need be.
How Can I Keep My Dog Cool While Camping?
Camping in hot weather is fun but sometimes the heat can trigger too much discomfort. Learn how to keep your pet cool by following these tips:
Cooling Dog Bed
Buy a cooling dog bed. It brings about a cooling effect since the bed contains cooling gel filling. Some beds can be operated using a battery while others can be plugged in. Besides, the beds are small, fordable and indeed worth a try.
A cooling dog bandana is a bandana that can be dipped in cold water, wring it out and put round the dog’s neck. The bandana brings about a cooling effect to the dog.
Shelter in places of shade. You can park your RV under a shed or have your tent pitched under a shade. You can also extent RV sheds using awnings. In that manner, nature would naturally bring about a cooling effect.
Buying a good sunscreen specially made for dogs can be useful especially for dogs with minimal fur, white fur, or pink skin. The sunscreen protects the dog from sunburns just as humans use sunscreen to protect the skin against harmful rays of the sun.
A pair of dog shades can protect the dog’s eye against the scorching rays of the sun. They are good for outdoor activities and your dog would love to try.
The paws need to be protected against the hot ground. Dog shoes or booties can offer good protection. Besides, the shoes minimize the risk of the dog having an injury while moving about.
If the place has a swimming pool or you are near a safe water body, why not swim? Once the body is in contact with the cool waters automatically a cooling effect would result. Swimming is also a great way to spend time during camping.
You can schedule your swimming when the day’s temperature is at peak say from noon to 3 pm in most places. If your dog is not skillful in swimming be sure to use a float jacket to keep your pet afloat.
Drink water to stay hydrated and cool your body. The dog would definitely enjoy a drink to quench its thirst.
How Do You Tell If My Dog Is Cold At Night?
More tips for camping with dogs is to ensure your pet dog is comfortable and does not suffer the extreme environmental conditions such as temperature, humidity, rain, storm, and many more.
Actually, even without using a thermometer to measure temperature of your dog, there are several signs you can look out for to know when your dog is called and needs a warm up. A dog that is feeling cold exhibits the following behaviors:
- Reluctant to walk and sometimes may try turning around
- Appears uncomfortable and anxious
- Barking or Whining
- Seeks various places for a comfort shelter
- Shivering or Shaking
- Lifts paws way from the ground
- Hunched posture especially with a tucked tail
When the dog gets severely cold, hypothermia signs and symptoms can be evident. Besides, too much hiking with minimal rests can trigger hypothermia signs and symptoms. Try minimize being an extremist and enhance your pets comfort as much as possible.
The signs and symptoms of hypothermia can include:
- Loss of consciousness
- Muscle stiffness
- Stupor-like state
- Dilated and fixed pupils
- Lack of mental alertness
The following is a visual illustration of more tips for camping with dogs in RV.