VITAL CHECKLIST #1: IS YOUR DOG READY FOR CAMPING?
Posted by Tyler Barnard on July 24, 2014. 0 Comments
The first time we took Noble camping he was only about a year old. We assessed his readiness in a variety of ways that may be helpful to you if you’re planning a first-time adventure with your pup - or trying to figure out what went wrong on a recent outing. ;) Ask yourself these questions:
- Is your dog well-trained? Being responsive to your basic commands – without hesitation – may be the difference between a great trip and a tragic one. It’s better to be safe than sorry by testing his responsiveness before camping.
- Is your dog healthy? Backpacking and Camping may present different challenges for your dog than regular trail outings. Are his endurance, breathing, leg strength and overall conditioning appropriate for your journey? For instance, we live and often camp in high altitude, in mountainous terrain which requires Noble to adapt.
- Can your dog swim? If your dog is young or has only been swimming in certain conditions, don’t assume that he will immediately adapt and take to new water on your trip. Oceans, ponds, running rivers and streams all present different currents, depths & obstacles. We knew of “swimming breed” that refused to cross standing water. That would be a bummer to discover!
- How well does your dog adapt to weather? If he has difficulty tolerating changes in temperature OR is afraid of thunder, lightning or wind, do both of you a favor and leave him at home.* It will be very stressful for him, which is likely to cause you problems that will cut your trip short.
- How does your dog react to wildlife and strangers? If your dog is fearful and responds to the unexpected with aggression or excessive barking, you will not be welcome in the woods by man or beast. On the other hand, if you dog is curious but exercises caution and responds well to commands, then you’ll likely be prepared for encounters.
* While we learned quickly that Noble is a natural – loves the outdoors and responds to our commands and whereabouts at all times - he didn’t do well at night in the cold. In the early years he was always wreaking havoc and wrecking our (expensive) sleeping bags & tents. That’s what led us to develop the NobleCamper 2-in-1 Dog Bed. The bonus: he knows the bed is his and finds comfort in it under all conditions.
Questions or comments about knowing when a dog is ready for camping? Please share!
BoulderLite, of Boulder, CO an e-commerce venture specializing in lightweight active gear for dogs, has launched The NobleCamper Blog, an interactive site for Dog Lovers and Outdoors Enthusiasts to share favorite campsites, trails, health, environmental stewardship & gear tips.