Dog hiking equipment

What does a dog need for a hike?

The packing list for a hiker is always a compromise: either take only what is necessary for survival, or put convenience first without fear of extra weight. One way or another, taking a dog on a hike naturally also increases the amount of necessary equipment. The person hiking with the dog is responsible for the well-being of the dog in addition to himself, so it is also good to think about possible problem situations and how to act in them in advance. Below you will find a packing list that you can use as a basis for preparing for your own trips.

Traildog's packing list for hiking with a dog

  • Dog bed . The ground oozes cold and damp, so a sleeping pad is also essential for thick-furred dogs. The sleeping platform also protects the bottom of the tent from claws, if the dog sleeps inside the tent. Cellular plastic sleeping pad is the cheapest and lightest choice for a dog - although the most comfort-seeking and the coldest need additional softness/warmth on top of the base. Today there are also their own for dogs inflatable sleeping pads .

  • Jacket and/or sleeping bag overnight. It is also good for long-haired dogs to get warmth, especially at night, for the muscles strained by the hike. Dogs with very thick fur, used to sleeping outside, do not necessarily need this. The thinnest indoor dogs often need both a coat and additional warmth such as a sleeping bag, at least if the night temperature is only a few degrees or colder.

  • Raincoat and/or a light absorbent towel. A wet dog must be dried before entering the tent. Damp fur easily cools the dog's muscles.

  • Harness . On hikes, you may come across tight spots where the dog may need assistance. It is significantly safer to lift and assist a dog in a harness than in a collar.

  • Cup . Collapsible food/water cup saves space.

  • Slippers . Even if the hiking terrain is easy, a sensor or claw injury can occur anywhere. Get e.g. light rubber-covered slippers in your first aid kit, which protect the sensors from stress and also keep any paw bandage dry.

  • First aid supplies (e.g. bandages, disinfectant, space blanket, allergy medicine for insect stings, paw grease (also as a preventive measure). You can assemble the EA supplies yourself or get a ready-made comprehensive EA package .

  • Energy-rich food. During hikes, the dog's energy consumption is high. So it is good for the food to be as energy-rich as possible. The most important thing is that the dog's stomach should have been accustomed to the food offered on the trip in advance. Diarrhea and hiking are a bad combination! Dog food is usually the biggest extra weight for those hiking with a dog, but fortunately it diminishes with the days of hiking. If you want to move with as light equipment as possible, you should consider dried meat for the dog, which is swollen with water. For dogs is also available freeze-dried travel foods , whose packaging volume is smaller than dry snacks.

  • Water. Plan in advance how much water your dog needs and where you can fill up the water reserves.

  • Waterproof packing bags: If your dog has its own backpack, it is a good idea to pack the moisture-sensitive equipment/food inside it in waterproof packing bags / mini grips. It's good to be prepared for torrential rain and most dog trunks are not completely waterproof.
  • Possibly for a dog backpack . Getting used to the backpack must always start well in advance of the actual hike. Find out more about the topic and Choosing a backpack here: Dog backpack selection guide
  • Canicross belt for a person. Many people want to keep their hands free while hiking, so attaching a leash to the hip is a convenient option. However, you should remember that the hip belts and their buckles are usually not designed to withstand a forward pull. If you don't want to take risks with the tire breaking, a separate Canicross belt is a good option. Find out here to our Canicross belt selection guide .

Other useful things:

  • A piece of duct tape. For emergencies and repairing broken equipment.
  • Climbing hook i.e. carabiner. A light piece of equipment that is often used. With an additional carabiner, the dog's leash can be easily clipped around a tree or equipment can be attached to the outside of the backpack.