Hiking with your dog is super fun and exciting! Check out my top 10 Must Have Dog Hiking Gear!
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Hikers love taking their dogs on hikes with them for a number of reasons. I enjoy hiking with my blue heeler, Darby, on hikes! She is a super active dog who needs lots of exercise and she’s an adventure junky; like myself.
Seriously, my dog loves adventure. She’s always looking for excitement everywhere she goes and can’t get enough of it.
If you’re wanting to take your dog on hikes I highly recommend checking out 10 pieces of must have gear that will make your hike enjoyable for both you and your dog. I personally use these dog hiking gear products and I wouldn’t go without them.
Having your dog outfitted with proper gear is just as important as it is for you to be properly geared up for a hike.
Top 10 Must Have Hiking Gear For Dogs
Products from Amazon.com
The Essential Gear
- One of the number one and most important pieces of gear to have for your dog while hiking is fresh, clean water. I like to carry along a small, silicon, collapsible water/food bowl that has a carabiner attached to easily clip onto my pack. I like clipping it to the front of my Osprey Kyte pack for easy accessibility for when my dog is thirsty.
- Next, is the Black Rhino Heavy Duty Dual Handle Dog Leash. Now, this leash holds many features that I absolutely love for being out on the trail. I love that it’s rugged and can withstand a beating. I love the two handles that it has. One handle is for normal use and the other is to pull up your dog very close to you when coming into contact with others; human or not. There’s also a nice pouch for doggie poop bags; which comes in handy!
- The Lifeunion Service Dog Pack is an amazing essential item as it allows your dog to carry their own gear! Sometimes I think hikers don’t take their dogs hiking with them is because they’ll be needing to carry extra weight! Nope! Not with this pack! You’re dog can carry most of their gear on their own! I recommend trying it out at home that way there will be no surprises on the trail. I love that this pack comes in different colors, is durable & water-resistant, adjustable, and comfortable for your dog to wear and carry their hiking gear well.
- The Fab Fur Gear Pet First Aide Kit is an essential and a must have item while out on the trail! Just as much as you need a first aid kit, so does your dog. Anything can happen out there and you need to be prepared! This kit has it all! The National Animal Poison Control Center number is in this kit, a tourniquet, gauze, compresses, flea comb – the list goes on and this has everything you need! It’s also Vet approved! I do recommend adding a soft muzzle to this kit. A hurt dog, even though it may be yours, will not be friendly to deal with!
- The next must have product while hiking with your dog isn’t fun for anyone, you or four-legged friend! It’s a Tick Twister! The reality is gals that ticks are going to happen. Hopefully you’ve taken all measures possible to help the prevention of ticks and fleas on your fur baby but, sometimes they just happen! I like the Tick Twister because it allows for safe removal of the tick and doesn’t require me to actually touch the tick – YUCK! This will also come in handy if a blood sucker wants to try to make friends with you too!
Products from Amazon.com
Food | Hydration | Bugs | Doggie Poo’s
- When it comes to your doggie doing his/her #2 business you have two options on the trail. First and foremost, be a decent human being and always implement “Leave No Trace” practices even with your dogs, please! You can either pick up after your dog with poop bags or you can use a trowel, dig a hole & bury their poo at least 6″; then cover it back up. If you use poop bags you’re going to have to pack out their waste, so keep that in mind.
- Your dog is going to be expending a lot of energy so you’re going to need food and snacks! I recommend bringing about 50% more food than what your dog usually eats and a decent amount of snacks as well. Make sure that your snack options for your pet are high quality. I like to bring along a mixture of homemade snacks and store-bought. One food item that I can enjoy as well as my dog; is natural-no sugar added-no junk-no artificial sweetened peanut butter! It’s a great fat, energy fuel source that my dog loves!
- Not really a product, but don’t forget your pooch needs water! You’re going to need about 1 quart of water per 3 miles for your dog at the minimum! I’d do your research and learn if the trail you’re going on will have natural water sources or not so you can be well prepared for water provisions for both you and your dog. You also need to make sure that you’re filtering your dogs water as well when obtaining from rivers and lakes. They need clean water too! One tip I learned from a women’s Facebook hiking group was bringing a small amount of Pedialyte to help minimize the chance of dehydration in your dog. I also recommend that you talk with your vet about the signs of dehydration and what to do if your dog experiences this on the trail and what you should do if it happens.
- Having a form of insect repellant is a good idea to have for your dogs in the spring/summer/fall. Most of the time the tick and flea prevention medication you’re using will probably be helpful against insects too, but incase it doesn’t I would again speak with your vet about safe choices and what they recommend.
- Lastly, I always have some pet friendly, bathing wipes to have back at the truck to wipe down my dog really well before getting inside. This will help with removing any possible poisonous plant residue as well as remove some dirt. At this point I like to inspect my dog one more time for ticks, other bugs, and plant matter that may have gotten matted up in her coat. This is when the flea comb will come in handy in your dogs first aid kit!
Other Quick Tips:
There are so many things that I could talk about for hiking with your dog and maybe those will become more blog posts, but I wanted to share with you a few other quick tips before hitting the trail!
When In Doubt Always Talk With Your Vet About Your Dogs Health Before Hiking
- Talk with your vet and ask about the possible negative effects of high altitude for your dog.
- Depending on your area a rattlesnake vaccination may be appropriate for your pet.
- Always make sure to check rules and regulations of dogs being on the trails you’re wanting to go on before you go.
- It’s a good idea to have a copy of vaccination records and a recent photo of your dog with you as well.
- Never take an aggressive dog on the trail.
- Some people think it’s beneficial to attach bear bells to dogs while hiking to help discourage bear encounters – not a bad idea or preventive measure.
- Always keep your dog leashed while on the trail. There is a time and place for “free” play time. Use your best judgement. P.S. Take their favorite fetch toy to play with them while having lunch!
- Make sure your dog is in good shape. Maybe try a few shorter trails to see how your dog likes hiking and responds to your commands while possibly around other people and in a new environment.
- NEVER allow your dog to chase after wildlife – I understand that it’s usually in their nature to do so for the hunt; mine loves hunting her rabbits, but when you’re on the trails and in the mountains you can come across some dangerous wildlife and you do not want an altercation between your pet and them or you and them!
- Have fun! Having fun with your dog while hiking is the most important part. Always be prepared and plan accordingly and you’ll have an amazing and successful hike with your dog!
Want More Tips for Hiking With Dogs?
I recently wrote an article for PetHelpful you can check out that article HERE
Be sure to contact me if you have any questions about taking your dog hiking or camping with you and don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter below!
Darby and I wish you and your dog well on your hikes!
Happy Trails –