Taking your dog camping with you is a great way to spend some time bonding while also enjoying the great outdoors. Your dog will enjoy hiking along trails, sitting by the campfire, and maybe even chasing after a few squirrels. However, there is some risk involved with bringing your dog into the woods for a camping trip. Take these steps before you leave to help ensure your dog's safety.
Have custom dog tags made.
Even if you have no plans of letting your dog off his leash, you never know when he might accidentally run off or end up separated from you. Having a dog tag on his collar could mean the difference between finding him promptly and never seeing him again. Have custom dog tags printed with your name, home address, cell phone number, and email address. This way, if someone finds your dog in the woods, they can get in touch with you immediately via your cell phone. If cell phone service is questionable at your camping site, you can at least head to the nearest town, connect to WiFi, and hope they have emailed you. You can find custom manufacturers, such as Pet Novo, locally and online.
Bring a doggy first aid kit.
You know not to camp without a human first aid kit -- right? But what about a first aid kit for your dog? Many of the items in your human first aid kit can be used on your dog if needed, but some additional items to have on hand for your dog's needs, specifically, include:
- A can of beef or chicken stock. In case of dehydration, this can be helpful for getting your dog to drink
- A muzzle. This can be vital if you need to clean a wound and your dog is not cooperative.
- A rectal thermometer.
- Tweezers. These may be needed to remove ticks or splinters.
Make sure your dog is up-to-date with flea and tick treatments.
If you don't regularly have your dog treated for fleas and ticks, such as with a spot-on treatment applied to their neck, have this done at your vet's office prior to camping. If you do ordinarily use these products, make sure your dog's dose is up-to-date through the end of your camping trip. Fleas and ticks are common in most wooded areas; ticks in particular spread an array of diseases like Lyme and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. You may even want to put a flea and tick collar on your dog for extra protection.