After several months of cold temperatures and snow, the weather is finally warming up for springtime hikes! Dogs love long walks and enjoy the crisp, fresh air while smelling new scents. Spending time with your pup outdoors can have many increased benefits for your physical and mental health. Check out these tips before heading out to the trails for a fun-filled hiking adventure.
1. Pack the right gear
Being prepared is the best way to enjoy a peaceful hike with your dog. To determine what you need to pack, think about how far and how long you plan to stay on the trails. A dog backpack can give your pup a purpose and allow them to carry small belongings.
2. Check the weather
In addition to packing the right gear, checking the forecast is essential. Never underestimate the potential for rain that may cause trails to become slippery or inaccessible. Waterproof backpacks and lightweight jackets can help keep you warm and dry.
3. Look for trail hazards
Depending upon the trail you choose, there may be certain hazards that possess danger for your dog. These include but are not limited to toxic plants, deep or contaminated water, steep trail ledges, invasive species and more. Combat these hazards by keeping your pup on a leash and having your eyes on them at all times!
4. Watch for wildlife
The outdoors are a great place to roam and observe natural wildlife. However, avoiding wild animal encounters can keep you and your pup from danger. Make yourself aware of your surroundings that may cause harm and know that dogs can often hear and smell before humans can.
5. Stay hydrated
If you recognize your pup becoming tired or having trouble breathing, consider taking a break and drinking some water. Hydration is important for keeping your electrolytes plentiful and for promoting a healthy bloodstream. Know your dog’s heat limits and be sure to bring a dog bowl to replenish with fluids throughout the day.