Tips for Camping with Pets
Who better to bring on a camping trip than a friend who already possesses a water-resistant, self-cleaning coat, a perpetually upbeat attitude, and will willingly sleep on the ground. Pets, in particular dogs, are popular camping companions.
First, make sure your camping destination is pet-friendly. Pet policies are listed clearly on campground “rules & regulations” pages. Campground managers are just as eager as you to make sure that all campers are aware of if, when, and where pets are welcome.
Next make sure your dog is welcome at the various other components of your trip. Check in advance to see if any restaurants, gardens, swimming beaches, and museums/indoor attractions that you plan to visit will allow pets. That said, many a camping trip includes absolutely none of these venues, and you can easily plan a Fido-friendly camping trip.
Pack your dog’s favorite fuel for the trail. While you have been planning burgers and s’mores on the campfire for yourself, don’t forget your pet’s tried and true kibble. Also be sure to pack the supplies you need to pick up after your pet at the campground and on your various adventures.
Bring an extra sturdy leash or harness and even a crate (particularly a collapsible crate). There might be a need to provide extra secure protection for your pet, in case of emergency such as a thunderstorm, traffic jam, or other aggressive animals. What if you had to shut off your car’s air conditioning for an extended period of time, or walk your dog on a highway?
Do your part to make sure that pets continue to enjoy increased access to recreational facilities. Respect other campers’ personal space; it’s up to you to make sure your dog (or cat, parrot, etc.) does not touch or encroach on another person (or animal) without invitation. AND particularly, prevent your pet from disturbing wildlife. Wild animals live, for the most part, on the jagged edge of survival. When they have to divert energy and attention from finding food and tending their young it threatens their survival. The opportunity to live closer to nature with your pet is a great reason to be a steward of the environment and the outdoor community.