With the summer practically upon us, there is so much more to do with your family and pets. Get out of the house and enjoy one of these five outdoor recreational activities to do with your dog!
Whether you use an RV or like to pitch a tent camp on a primitive site, your dog is a worthy companion! Dogs in RVs love to tag along as long as you can take frequent potty and play brakes and restrain them safely in your vehicle in the event of an accident. For tent campers, there are some special considerations. If you’re hiking into your site, you’ll want to make sure that dogs are allowed on hiking trails. In addition, you’ll want to make sure you have all the items your dog’s needs – from food to bedding – on your person to carry in. Although backpacking should involve minimalist, lightweight gear, don’t skimp on the necessities. You can check out recreational retailers for a wide range of dog gear meant for backpacking. If you’re not hiking into your campsite, you’ll have the benefit of pulling your car up to the camp area. Are you not sure what to pack your dog for a safe and comfortable camping trip? Here’s our shortlist:
- Dog food
- Collapsible dog bowls
- Safety harness with pockets (for extra storage)
- Dog bed or mat
- Dog sweater (if traveling in cool weather)
- Updated tags
- Proof of ownership
- Vaccination records
- Name and number of a local veterinarian
Boating is an exciting activity with or without your dog! When boating with a dog, however, there are some key things to remember. First, invest in a high-quality life jacket for your dog. Whether there’s an accident or you have a dog who just loves to swim, a life jacket is a good idea. Next, don’t allow your dog to drink lake or sea water. If it’s salty, the water can make them sick. That means you need to provide a source of drinking water for your pets. There are some great non-skid bowls you can get and fill with water before you head out on your trip. Lastly, if you plan to stay on your boat for most of the day, get your dog some sunscreen. Special dog-friendly sunscreen will keep your dog’s skin from becoming burnt. Believe it or not, it can happen.
Hiking is a fun and easy activity to do with your dog without the need for lots of equipment. Just bring your leash and some drinking water! Hikes should be tailored to the health of your dog. If you have an agile pet with lots of energy, then a longer hike is appropriate. However, if you have a small dog, a puppy, or an elderly dog, you’ll want to keep your hikes to a reasonable amount of time without too many inclines.
What is Geocaching? According to the Geocaching website, “Geocaching is a real-world, outdoor treasure hunting game using GPS-enabled devices. Participants navigate to a specific set of GPS coordinates and then attempt to find the geocache (container) hidden at that location.”
Once you download the application on your mobile device, you can take your dog with you on hunts in your town or at a state or National Park. Geocaches are hidden all over the world. So, if you want to stretch your legs and love puzzles, this might be the perfect new hobby for you!
Does your dog love water? Then find some dog-friendly beaches in your area. Some dogs take to water like a fish, while others need more coaxing. Don’t push a dog to do anything they don’t want to do. Once you get your dog used to the water, like boating, invest in a good life jacket with handles for you to pull your dog out of the water. Whether you’re just doing laps or lounging on a sandbar, a dog is a good companion.
Lastly, a Note on Safety
The most important thing to remember is safety. The safety of yourself and your pet should be your first priority. Whenever you’re planning a trip or activity for your pet, be sure to bring along those things that keep you prepared in the event of an emergency. The second most important thing to remember is to HAVE FUN!