Pets add a tremendous amount of value. Whether as a constant companion, as part of a support system, or as a treasured member of the family, they enrich our lives and keep us on our toes (anyone who has ever been through the ‘puppy stage’ can attest to this).
Many people camp with dogs, though we’ve seen a number of people who also camp with their cats, guinea pigs, rabbits, various other rodents, and pigs. Yes, pigs. No matter what kind of pet you’re camping with, it’s important your furry friend is taken care of. Unless you have one of those terrifying-looking hairless cats, in which case they’re a non-furry friend:
For the purposes of this article, we’re going to stick with dogs as they are the most common camping companion. According to the American Camping Report 2017, over 37% of people camp with their dogs.
Here are some tips to bear in mind when camping with your four legged friends:
1) Get That Dog Some ID!
Always make sure your dog is properly licensed and has a tag with your contact information on their collar. When you camp, you’re placing your pet in unfamiliar territory. If they get lost, they’ll be easier to find if they’re tagged.
2) On with the Leash
In addition, in order to not lose your pet, keeping them on a leash is smart. With a new environment comes a natural curiosity to explore and scent mark. Keep your dog close, on a leash, or tethered to your campsite.
3) Water, Water, Everywhere
Make sure your dog has access to fresh, clean water. Don’t let them drink standing water as it often contains bacteria that can cause stomach issues for your pooch.
4) Fire, Bad!
Keep your dog away from the campfire. Most dogs don’t understand fire until they touch it. Better to keep them at a safe distance as even an ember can burn your dog’s fur.
5) Consider a Crate
If your dog is already crate trained, it’s a good idea to bring it along so your dog has a safe and comfortable place to rest. Many dogs can get anxious being out of their element. If not a crate, then maybe just bring along their bed so they have a sense of the familiar.
6) Don’t Leave Your Dog Unattended
It’s common sense to never leave a dog alone in a hot car, but at the same time you shouldn’t leave your fuzzy companion unattended at your campsite, even if your dog is tethered. There are far too many things that can be knocked over or damaged. On top of that, if your dog is a digger, you may come back to an archaeological dig site.
7) Keep Dog Food Locked Away
Most people know to lock up the human food in order to avoid attracting wildlife, but the same goes for dog food. Before you know it, you’ll have a family of squirrels living in your RV. Lock up your dog food in your RV or car for safekeeping.
The above tips can also easily be applied to children 😉 Happy camping!