5 Tips for Hiking with Dogs


Summer is a time for a lot of outdoor bonding activities with your furry side-kick.  If you love spending time in the great outdoors, hiking is a great way to be outdoors with your dog with the added benefits of exercising and exploring. At first, it may be a challenge to hike with a dog but with our tips shared below, you can work towards having unforgettable hiking experiences with your dog while keeping safety at the forefront.


1. Assess your dog’s fitness level and health.

Before hiking, ensure that you evaluate your dog’s current fitness level, such as overall fitness level and health. A dog that is too old or too young may not have the ability or endurance to go for long extensive hikes, endurance may need to be built up first. Start with shorter, easier hikes and gradually increase time and distance as endurance is being built. A general guideline for puppies is 5-10 minutes of walking per month of age (E.g. 3-month-old puppies should be okay with 15-30 minutes of walking) depending on breed, fitness level, and discretion.

2. Plan your route, choose dog-friendly trails, and keep your dog on a sturdy leash.

By planning the route, you can ensure that your dog will be physically able to complete the hike and that you have a plan in place. By following dog-friendly trails, local regulations can be met, and you can feel more confident that the terrain and hike are suitable for your pet. Keeping your dog on a leash protects wildlife and ensures your dog’s safety from eating any dangerous plants or drinking from contaminated puddles.

3. Pack essentials like water, waste bags, and snacks.

Bringing essentials such as water, waste bags, snacks, and other items such as collapsible bowls and a first aid kit ensures that you are prepared. It is important to hydrate, eat as needed and pick up after your dog to leave no trace and dispose of waste.

4. Take frequent breaks and ensure your dog gets plenty of water to rehydrate.

Just like humans, dogs are prone to dehydration. Ensure you offer your dog water regularly and bring enough water for the hike. Hotter temperatures mean you must bring more water to keep hydrated.

5. Watch out for ticks and other hazards.

Ticks, fleas, and insects can be found in wooded areas and tall grass, ensure that you are checking your dog regularly. In addition, be mindful of the terrain to prevent injured paws to ensure your dog’s safety and comfort. Use a doggy first-aid kit as needed.


We hope that these 5 tips help you with your next hiking adventure with your furry friend. Don’t forget to capture unforgettable memories while being present with your dog!