By: Valerie Trumps for Pet360.

Have you ever want to bring your beloved dog along for a camping trip but felt unsure of how it might work out? Here is how to get your pooch ready for weekends in the wild.

Is My Dog Cut Out For Camping?

Before planning a trip, you need to figure out if your dog can handle “ruffing” it. If Fido is big on barking, he is best left at home so that you and other campers can have a peaceful experience. If your dog tends to wander when left to his own devices, you might want to keep him on leash or attached to a run. Next, consider your dog’s physique and capabilities, especially if the trip involves hiking. If your dog is a breed that is low to the ground, like a Dachshund, rough terrain is not the best option. Think about the length of his fur and his grooming requirements.

Boot Camp

Training is crucial for a camp-ready canine, unless you plan to keep him leashed for the duration of your trip. For advocates of the leash, plan to bring a long rope to securely tie between two trees so your dog can have a “run” while remaining safely in your vicinity. Even for tethered dogs, commands are still important. You want him to drop that porcupine when you tell him to.

Doggy Gear

Of course, you need to bring along the usual dog-friendly equipment—bowls for food and water, kibble or canned grub (don’t forget a can opener), a collar, a leash, a poop scoop and bags, his favorite sleeping set-up, a toy, and maybe a crate to ensure his safety if things get really wild. But if your trip includes backpacking, Fido can carry his own weight. Backpacks for canines are designed to strap around a dog’s chest and have pouches on either side to help you cart stuff across the woods.

Special Considerations

When packing for a camping trip with your furry friend, take whatever you will need and “doggify” it for your pooch. Maybe you’d like to bring something special for him to enjoy while you’re roasting wienies and marshmallows over the campfire. Perhaps she would appreciate some rubber-soled canine booties for hitting the trail without the consequences of sharp rocks. Extra towels in case of rainy days are a must, as is shampoo to clean up after a romp in the mud. Finally yet importantly, consider the tick and flea potential of your destination of choice, and bring along effective repellants as well as a magnifying glass and sharp tweezers to remove any offenders.

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