5 Things to Know to Keep Your Dog Safe While Hiking
The ASO Mammoth team specializes in supplying the gear you need to enjoy Mammoth Lakes’ outdoors. Still, even though our shop is full of skis, snowboards, and mountain bikes for rent, the thing that fuels us is seeing the joy that Mammoth Lakes’ outdoor activities brings to visitors and locals alike.
No matter how much we love seeing our customers excited about being outside in Mammoth Lakes though, no one gets more excited about the outdoors than their dogs!
A dog will be happy doing just about anything outside in Mammoth Lakes, but hiking through the streams and mountains of the Eastern Sierra is impossible to top. ASO Mammoth has put together a list of the most important things you need to know to keep your dog safe while hiking together so you can get on the trail faster!
Read all about it below before you hit the trail with your dog!
Always Follow Trail Rules and Etiquette
Everyone loves seeing a dog sprinting out of pure excitement, but when in the wilderness it’s important that you always keep your dog under control.
Although the trail is safe for you and your dog as long as it says they’re allowed, the areas alongside it may have hidden dangers that you can’t see like cliffs, water, or plants that can hurt your dog. Plus, there could be wildlife that could harm them if you’re not there to stop your dog from agitating it. That’s why you should always keep your dog on a leash if the trail you’re hiking on requires it.
You should also keep other people on the trail in mind as well. As much as you love your dog and your dog loves new people, other hikers may not feel the same. You should always keep your dog in-site, and if they like to jump on people then you should keep them on a leash so that everyone on the trail can pass comfortably.
Lastly, don’t forget to pick up after your dog! The best way to make sure that you and your dog can keep hiking your favorite trails together is by taking care of the trail, so always have a bag ready to pack out whatever they leave behind!
Choose a Hike that Matches Your Dog’s Fitness
It doesn’t matter how far you can hike, when you’re hiking with your dog you’re only going as far as they can.
No matter how excited your dog is to be outside, if they’re not physically conditioned to walk for miles then you shouldn’t push them to do so. It’s especially important to consider your dog’s fitness when hiking somewhere with a high elevation like Mammoth Lakes.
If you don’t know how far your dog can hike, then start small and build up from there!
Give them Plenty of Chances to Drink Water
Dogs can’t tell you that they’re thirsty, so you must give them plenty of opportunities to drink water. That’s why you should always have your portable bowl and plenty of fresh water for your dog on hand.
Reinforce Verbal Commands Before You Get on the Trail
Whether it’s to avoid a natural hazard like a cliff, wildlife, or another person on the trail, when you call your dog to you, they need to come if you’re going to hike together. Take the time to reinforce verbal commands to make sure that they do!
Walk Before You Hike
If you were thrown onto a hike with no preparation you would struggle, and your dog will too if they don’t get some exercise before your hike!