Your dogs may not know that June is National Camping Month. But I’m guessing they would love to join you on your next camping trip… regardless of when it is.
Some of you already take your dogs with you when you go camping. You wouldn’t think about leaving them at home or in a doggie motel.
Others have considered taking their dogs camping. But they’re concerned there might be too many problems to deal with.
Depending on how well behaved your dogs are, it can be a lot of fun to have them along with you on a camping trip. But as with most other things in life, preparation is the key.
Vet visit is essential
The first thing to do in advance of a camping trip in which your dogs will be involved is make sure the campground is pet-friendly. Second is vet visits.
It’s very important they be caught up on their vaccinations. And it’s just as essential that they be protected against fleas and ticks, which love wooded areas.
Because it’s possible, God forbid, that your dogs could get lost on a camping trip, make sure they are micro-chipped. And ensure that your cellphone number is listed on their tags.
In addition to packing a pet first-aid kit among your supplies, know where the closest animal hospital is to where you’ll be camping.
Dog, meet your tent
Next, get your dogs used to your camping equipment before you leave. Set up your tent and other items a few times in the yard and let your dogs sniff their way around it.
If your dogs are going to be sleeping in your tent with you, they should become familiar with walking in and out of it.
Among your camping gear should be a stake you can drive into the ground and tie your dog’s leash to. Let your dogs get used to being tied up that way.
Have a separate backpack for your dogs’ items. This will include food, water bottles, chew toys and their favorite blankets or beds. Plus towels, a brush and extra leashes in case one or more of them breaks.
Keep that canine close
Once you are at the campgrounds, use pet-friendly insect repellant. Your vet should be able to recommend the best brand for your dogs.
Stay close to your dogs at all times. If this is a new environment for them, their natural curiosity may cause them to wander.
Check your dogs for anything that might get in their fur. Including burrs, thorns and ticks. Keep them in the shade when they’re relaxing and give them plenty of water.
Of course, make sure to pick up all of your dogs’ waste and dispose of it properly. You will appreciate it if fellow campers do the same with their dogs.
Don’t forget about you
One more thing to think about. And this is for you more than it is for your dogs.
Even if you use tick protection on your dogs, ticks can still get on them.
Due to the medicine, those ticks might then jump off your dog and decide you are their second choice.
So check yourself thoroughly for ticks several times a day while on a camping trip.
Having your beloved dogs with you while camping can make it much more fun for you and your animals.
But only if you’ve taken precautions and prepared for it.