When you're hiking or camping with your dog, make sure that you are prepared.

There are some important things to bring along on your journey to the great outdoors.

Must haves:
  • A buckle or snap collar - preferably reflective.
  • A collar, current ID tag and an up-to-date microchip.
  • Current Rabies vaccination.
  • A sturdy 6 foot leash, not a ‘flexi-type’ or one that allows your dog to be yards ahead of you.
  • Water. Do not allow your dog to drink from puddles, streams or lakes.
  • Baggies to pick up your dog’s waste.
Good ideas:
  • Carry an emergency first aid kit for your pet. Take a pet CPR and First Aid Class.
  • Additional vaccinations. Consider heartworm medication and vaccinating for Lyme disease.
  • Apply a topical tick repellant a few days in advance.
  • Protective booties. Dog booties are essential for a pet that does not get out of the house much.
  • Bedding. If you are camping with your dog, they will need bedding.
  • Bring a long cable to tether your dog near your campsite, but away from the fire or cooking area. Do not leave your dog tethered when you are not at your campsite, make sure they do not get tangled and make sure there is access to water and shade.
  • Water bowls and bottles.
  • Sunglasses to assist in keeping your pet safe from long exposure from damaging UV rays.
  • Jackets – dogs get cold too.
  • Life jackets if you will be in water.
Heat awareness:
  • Never leave your pet in a parked car. Even on an 85-degree day, the temperature inside a parked car will reach 102 degrees in less than 10 minutes and will exceed 120 degrees in 30 minutes.
  • Watch for these signs of heat exhaustion.
  •  Apply a zinc-free sunscreen to their ears and top of his nose.
If your pet gets lost:
  • Contact the Park Ranger immediately.
  • Put up lost posters around a 3 mile square radius; at restaurants, trail heads, rest stops and frequented camping spots.
  • Return to the area frequently and stay awhile, chances are. they may find their way back.
  • File a report with the nearest humane society and/or local animal control facility.
  • Run a newspaper ad in publications that serve the community you were visiting.
July 8, 2016