To dog or not to dog...70 mile hike.

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King Snuggler!
Barked: Fri Jun 3, '11 10:13pm PST 
We've taken our dog camping with no problems. In about a month my husband and I will be hiking a 70 mile trail over about a week's time. I want to take Otto, my husband doesn't. I think we could get Otto a backpack of his own to carry his food and stuff. I would just like to have him along and I think he would enjoy it. My husband is worried about the extra water we will have to carry....what to do??!!

Stand still and- they won\'t see- me.
Barked: Fri Jun 3, '11 11:14pm PST 
I think it would make the hike better to have a faithful friend along as long as dogs are allowed on the trails. is there water along that you can sanitize? Ruffwear has a single trak backpack that carries 2 water bladders that is quite nice but then there would not be space for food. maybe you can take one of their other packs and add the bladders to them. I would not push it though if your husband is fully against it. talk to him and find out his reasons. Are they valid? Maybe he feels it will be more hassle and rather just spend the time with just you.

Barked: Sun Jun 5, '11 2:56pm PST 
First off, make sure dogs are even allowed where you're going and what the rules are. If you take him, you can't do anything or go anywhere where a dog can't.
Also, if hubby is against it, it's better to just leave him at home. If you can convince hubby to let him come, that's great, but don't push it.

If you do take him, get him in shape first! Dogs are just like people and need to be conditioned for this kind of stuff. If you get him a pack slowly work up his endurance with it. Dogs can safely carry about 10-25% of their weight if they have been conditioned for it first. Don't just slap a loaded pack on his back and expect him to be fine.

If there is a source of water where you will be going, bring stuff to purify it or boil it before using it, for both you and the dog. That way you won't have to carry as much. If not, then you will need extra water if you want to carry it or not.

He'll need more food during the hike, so be prepared for extra weight of that as well.


King Snuggler!
Barked: Wed Jun 8, '11 3:37pm PST 
Hi guys...yes dogs are allowed on the trail. I think we are going to leave Otto with our parents though. The weather has been brutally hot and I honestly don't want to put him through that. We took him for a long, hilly walk the other day and he was exhausted. We do walk him regularly, but I really don't think Otto would enjoy this hike. As far as my husband goes...he's really not against it, but worried about us making it ourselves...LOL. Thanks!
Bianca CGC- TT HIC Thd- ♥

What big ears- you have...
Barked: Wed Jun 8, '11 3:45pm PST 
Dogs do need conditioning to long hikes just like people. Dogs also need to be conditioned to wearing a pack and carrying extra weight. So if you want to hike more in the future please make sure you build up the length of the hikes slowly and condition your dog to wearing a pack first, and then to wearing a weighted pack over shorter hikes and then slowly increase the length to build the dog's endurance.