A Guide to Camping with your Dog
Tips and advice on camping with your dog.
A Guide to Camping with your Dog27.05.2020
Thinking about your next holiday? Why not consider a camping trip, which includes your dog. Huge benefits of this include not having to leave your dog at a kennels or with someone else, and seeing their sad face as you leave them behind. To do this, all you need to do is find yourself a dog friendly campsite, have a suitable car to transport your dog in, and ensure you have everything they need alongside all the essentials you need for yourself and your family.
Step One - find a suitable campsite, which is dog friendly. As well as the campsite itself, you will want nearby amenities to cater for dogs also. Lots of websites can help with this and most will have information on their websites. Alternatively, you can always make contact with a campsite directly, to find out their dog policies.
It is likely that travelling to the campsite with your dog will involve a lengthy drive. Therefore, it is important to ensure that both you and your dog are comfortable and safe for the duration of the journey. Ways of keeping your dog safe when travelling include use of a seat belt harness, pet carrier or dog cage. These are readily available from pet stores and online outlets.
When travelling, you need to ensure that you plan to take regular breaks throughout your journey. For every few hours of driving, you should stop for at least 15 to 30 minutes. This will give your dog chance to stretch their legs and relieve themselves.
Bring a good quality lead with you. Camping will likely be a new experience for your dog, and this will remain the case each time you go. The campsite will be new, unfamiliar surroundings for your dog - and the urge to inspect all and investigate every smell will be great. Ensuring you have a good quality lead and harness will mean that you can be confident walking your dog in this new environment.
Packing some comfort items will also be helpful. Ideally, bring along with you a familiar bed which your dog frequently uses, along with a favourite toy. The scent of these should help your dog to settle and ease them into the camping lifestyle.
Food is obviously a must. Bring a sufficient supply of your dogs normal food, it is advisable to take too much with you, just in case. Water will hopefully be available at your campsite, and be fresh and running and suitable for drinking. However, you may as well pack some bottled water - which will be useful on the drive for one thing, but may also help out if things at the campsite are not quite as you expected. You can purchase items such as collapsable bowls for the food and water, which help save on space and can be transported easily.
Walks on the beach, if you are located close to one, are ideal. Your dog can enjoy the sand and sea. Walks in the countryside, allowing you to explore the surrounding area. Have a look online for dog friendly locations in the area. Spend time relaxing at the campsite - once you are all set up, spend plenty of time with your dog. This time is ideal to spend a lot of time with them, increasing your level of bonding. It will mean a lot to you in the future, to think back to the time you spend with them, aided by photos, make sure you take lots of photos.
Poop bags - make sure you clean up after your dog on the campsite and when out-and-about in the general area. Tent set-up - before you travel, try to take the time to set your tent up in the garden and let your dog familiarise themselves with the sight, sound and smell - before they need to do it in a new setting. Additionally, when arriving at the campsite, keep your dog a little distance away from when you set up, you don’t want him getting spooked by a stray tent pole!
Vet check-up - in advance of your trip, it is advisable to take your dog for a checkup, and bring along with you copies of their vaccination records. Have a search online for a local vet to where you are staying and note down the name and phone number of the practice, just in case this is needed during your stay.
Put together a doggy first aid kit - like you would for yourself, get together some essential first aid related items. This should include bandages, scissors, antiseptic, tick removers, and similar.
Ground stake - this is a really good purchase to enable you to secure your dog whilst allowing you to get on with tasks around the campsite, such as the set up of the tent and site area, plus when you are eating and if you need to cook in the evening.