The trees are budding, the flowers are blooming, and thoughts of hiking with your dog may be dancing in your head. But before you put on your hiking boots and leash up your pup, keep these safety tips in mind:
Prepare for a Fun Hike with Your Dog
First, assess your physicality. If you and your pup have spent the winter hibernating, don’t overexert yourselves the first time out.
Instead, work up to more strenuous exercise by taking longer walks around your neighborhood and/or having more play dates with other dogs.
Prepare Your Supplies
Time to make a list! Do you have enough clean water for both of you? Do you have a traveling water dish?
While you know to bring your own clean water, you also know that your dog probably loves drinking from a puddle. But just because pups seem to have steel stomachs, that doesn’t mean they can’t pick up parasites like giardia.
Keep your dog close while you’re hiking and offer them clean water every few minutes.
Don’t forget snacks too. Hiking uses energy and you may need replenishing – for both of you.
Recognize the Signs of Heat Stroke
Overheating is dangerous for dogs young and old. When the temperatures start climbing, be aware of the symptoms. A dog in danger of heatstroke will pant heavily and look stressed. They may have a racing heartbeat, seizures, even a high fever.
Do a Tick Check
It is not uncommon to pick up ticks while hiking outside. Woods, fields, tall grasses, these are the types of places where ticks like to lie in wait for a host to come trotting by.
After a hike, do yourselves a favor and do a thorough check with a tick comb. Pay special attention around the tail, behind the ears, and between the toes as these are favorite tick hiding spots.
Want to make sure your dog is getting the exercise they deserve but don’t have the time to take them out on the trails? Consider Dogtopia where we provide safe, temperature-controlled playrooms for your pup. Find a location nearest you today!