Camping is one of the best experiences owners can share with their dogs. So it’s vital to ensure it goes swimmingly by having all the dog camping essentials. To make that easier, I thought I’d help you by going through all the necessities during these trips. You’ll soon be more than prepared to take your dog camping!
How to Plan a Camping Trip With Your Dog
Before I dive into the dog camping gear, I have to discuss trip preparation. Pet owners must plan and research everything when crafting a dog camping trip. Otherwise, the whole trip could fall apart rather quickly.
For instance, specific camping grounds and destinations don’t allow our canine friends. It makes researching the policies for these places an absolute necessity. If you don’t, your doggy best friend could find themselves stuck without any way to partake in the camping fun.
I’d also like to note many national parks and wildlife refuges don’t allow dogs on their trails. Of course, this is a massive bummer. But it’s never okay to defy these rules, as they exist for a reason.
Furthermore, please don’t bring a pet to these restricted places expecting them to hang out in the campground or vehicle all day. It’s not an ideal situation for anyone involved. Your dog certainly won’t have any fun.
So it’s much wiser to research these places to avoid these issues. You can then find a dog-friendly camping area or campground where everyone can have fun. Trust me; it’ll lead to a more rewarding time for you and your dog.
But ensure your chosen dog-friendly place can suit your needs. For example, these places can restrict the number of dogs and breed sizes. So make sure your canines meet the regulations.
You also want to ensure the areas meet your dog’s exercise needs. I always advise looking at a detailed map of these places. It’ll give you a better idea of whether it meshes with your dog’s physical and hiking capabilities.
8 Must-Have Dog Camping Gear Essentials
Since we’ve covered trip planning, let’s discuss the essential dog camping gear. These ten items are necessary to have a successful trip. Honestly, I wouldn’t advise ever taking your dog camping without them.
FYI, this post includes affiliate links. If you make a purchase through them, we’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. That said, you don’t HAVE to buy the product I recommend. I just wanted to make things easier for you by sharing my personal favorite for each one.
1. ID Tags with Contact Info
Our first item is one of the most essential on this list. After all, people will need a way to contact you if your dog gets loose or separated. So it’s vital to buy ID tags that you can put on your dog’s collar or harness.
You could even put them in a collar and harness if you’re extra cautious. I certainly find it helps keep my paranoia from ruining my dog’s camping trips. It comforts me to know if something happens to my dog, there’s a good chance of them being returned.
Anyone looking for an ID tag recommendation should consider this Personalized Slide-on GPS Pet Tag from Etsy. Their tags provide more than enough room for an address and phone number. Plus, I find them quite stylish.
2. Doggy First Aid Kit
Dog owners will want to be ready if there’s an injury on a trail or camping ground. So it’s essential to bring a doggy and human first aid kit. Therefore, any cuts or bruises can be dealt with immediately to avoid any long-term issues. You can easily make your own! Check out our DIY dog first aid kit tutorial to learn how.
If you prefer to just buy one all ready to go, look no further than ARCA’s PET Cat & Dog First Aid Kit. It’ll offer everything a dog owner could need to help address a canine’s health needs when traveling. Furthermore, it’s easy to carry as it fits right into a backpack.
3. Poop Bags
Anyone who tells you poop bags for dogs isn’t necessary is lying. When nature comes calling, dog owners must clean up their furry friends’ waste. It’s just proper etiquette when traveling on trails or anywhere else with a canine.
You’ll also want to ensure your poop bags are waterproof and durable. So make sure to get a solid collection like Earth Rated Dog Poop Bags. I’ve trusted this brand for years without any nasty incidents occurring.
4. Food, Treats, and Proper Storage Containers
You can’t bring your dog anywhere without their food. So please, double-check before leaving that your dog has their regular food. I’d also bring their favorite treats/toys to bring on hiking adventures and reward their good behavior.
However, I often run into other dog owners complaining about storing food and treats on these camping trips. It’s not surprising, considering bringing an entire food bag in a vehicle can be burdensome.
An easy solution is investing in solid and durable food storage containers. I’ve found options like Leashboss KibbleGo Dog Food Travel Bag to be absolute godsends. It makes life during these camping trips so much easier.
5. Water and Food Bowls
Camping trips will require a different type of water and food bowls than home usage. It would be best if you used ones that are lightweight and easy to carry. So, I’d suggest only considering collapsible options as it makes them effortless to store in backpacks. Petmate’s Collapsible Dog Bowls would be an excellent choice with their large capacity and clip-on feature.
6. Leashes, Collars, and Harnesses
Another obvious dog camping gear essential is leashes, collars, and harnesses. In other words, your dog needs to move from place to place quickly. Of course, these products are a part of every dog owner’s repertoire, but I’d recommend using a harness for camping trips.
These harnesses provide more control, especially when a dog sees their common squirrel enemies on a trail. It should stop the horrible experience of running around a camping site traveling to corral an excitable dog.
If you don’t have a harness, I’d suggest RUFFWEAR’s Multi-Use Support Dog Harness. It has helped me keep my Pitbull under control on many occasions.
Camping trips will involve your dog getting dirty and muddy. In some cases, they may even get soaked after taking a swim. So it becomes essential to bring along a few towels (these personalized dog towels are cute) to dry and clean them off after these adventures.
Otherwise, your vehicle and tent will become disgusting and smelly. Trust me; there’s nothing worse than being stuck in a cramped area with a “wet dog” smell. Any household towel should get the job done.
8. Reflective Gear or Safety light
Owners who intend to camp or hike at night must purchase dog reflective gear. It’ll make finding our furry friends much easier if they get separated from us. You can then track them down and keep a disaster from happening, especially with a product like these from Etsy.
I’d also recommend purchasing a safety light to put on their collar. It’s an additional safety precaution to help keep track of your dog at night. Here’s a great example from Apace Vision Store that provides excellent visibility and multiple color options.
Other Helpful Dog Camping Gear Accessories
Of course, there are many more helpful dog camping gear accessories. So I thought it’d be wise to list a few extra items I’ve found useful on my trips. I wouldn’t consider them essential, but they’re great to have in certain situations:
- Dog booties: Using dog booties is a great idea when hiking on rougher trails. These odd-looking products will protect your dog’s paw pads from getting hurt. Here’s a great look at top-tier dog boots from CovertSafe.
- Bug repellent: Any camper knows how unavoidable insects are during these trips, as they’ll have no issues attacking you and your dog. A dog-friendly bug repellent like Wondercide’s Flea, Tick, and Mosquito Spray can do wonders.
- Dog Jacket: Some dogs will need a little extra protection during those cold nights. So buying a jacket or coat can help them get cozy. It also can offer them a little style like this plaid jacket from Kuoser.
- Camping Tent: If you plan to camp outside a vehicle, investing in a tent becomes necessary. But it must have enough room for your pup and be secure enough to keep them contained during sleeping hours. After all, it’s dangerous to keep them on leashes at night, so this security is paramount. I’ve known several dog owners who have sworn by the quality of CAMPROS Camping Tents.
- Bedding: Setting a cozy bedding area with sleeping pads or bags inside the tent for your dog is crucial. You don’t want them sleeping on the cold ground. Plus, it’ll provide somewhere to relax when you’re doing stuff without them around the campsite.
Pet owners will be prepared to take their canine camping with our dog camping gear essentials. It’ll end up being a remarkable bonding experience with these items. Honestly, it doesn’t get much better than basking in nature with our furry friends.
Don’t forget to share your camping experiences in our comment section. I’d love to hear all about it and any of your dog camping gear recommendations!